Jennifer and Patrick Champion said they noticed a need for homeless shelters in their community, so they came up with, “The Refuge.”

“We knew that there was a need in our community, in Northport especially, for a shelter and for a transitional type program to help people get off the streets permanently and into a home of their own,” Jennifer said.

And that’s exactly what this shelter is all about, helping people get back into society. The home features 32 beds, 16 for men and 16 for women and children. In addition to basic necessities, the building will have 24-hour security, a worship room, a playground for kids and a learning center.

“We’ll have basic life skills training and how to do an interview, we’ll have clothing there that they can wear in job interviews, that they can wear to work,” she said. “We’re gonna have local businesses come in and take turns once a month and do some kind of skills training.”

Before they came up with “The Refuge” plan, the couple first an outreach program called “A Bucket of Hope,” where they give every homeless person they see a bucket filled with seasonal essential such as blankets and hand warmers, along with non-perishable foods.

“The bucket is topped off with the word of god, that’s the first thing they see when they open it,” Patrick said. “That’s a ministry that we’re using right now to reach out to the people that are homeless.

The Champions said they hope to have the land by 2018 and open their doors on June 13, 2022. If you would like more information on, “The Find HOPE Here Project” you can visit, hopeisnotlost.net.

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