December 21, 2020 - A new partnership formed by several local organizations and the City of Fort Wayne will result in additional assistance for homeless individuals and families.

St. Joseph Missions and Just Neighbors Interfaith Homeless Network will be the lead agencies providing a warming center for homeless men, women, and families and an overnight shelter for homeless single women.

The City of Fort Wayne, through federal funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and under the direction of the City's Community Development Division's office of Housing and Neighborhood Services, will be the fiscal agent. Additional partners include the Fort Wayne Area Planning Council, Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, and several local churches.

Overnight shelter services for homeless single women will begin today, Dec. 21 at 7 p.m. The warming center service will begin Tuesday, Dec. 22. The location is 301 W. Superior St, the former home of The Rescue Mission and now owned by the City of Fort Wayne through the Fort Wayne Redevelopment Commission. City Council supported the purchase of the property with a 7-2 vote.

The warming center will operate from 7 a.m.-7 p.m. daily and the overnight shelter for homeless single women will operate daily as well. COVID-19 protocols will be followed. Overnight accommodations for men will continue to be provided by The Rescue Mission, while overnight care for families will be overseen by Just Neighbors Interfaith Homeless Network.

The new partnership serves as the winter weather contingency plan for the City of Fort Wayne and will be in effect through April 30, 2021 and complements other homeless care services being provided in the community. St. Joseph Missions will be overseeing staffing of the winter contingency program while they continue to work on opening their own shelter in spring 2021.

"We're fortunate to live in a community that cares so much about people. Our social service partners have stepped up and will be making a tremendous difference to help those in need," said Mayor Tom Henry. "It's vital that we come together to provide hope and opportunity to residents going through difficult circumstances."