Letter from Henry – Family Housing

I was recently rebuked (gently) about not telling all who read the newsletter stories that the author was myself, Henry Young, the Executive Director. In the future, we will do as the newspapers and give credit for all printed material.

With that information out of the way, let’s move on to the article for this month. We are suddenly in near crisis mode for housing in the family area. When the current building was erected in the early 1990’s there was little need for family rooms or single parents with children. Society has changed drastically since those days and the need for more facilities has begun to rise very quickly. Please allow me to give you a few figures to help you understand where we are at this point: from 2015 to 2016 our total bed nights on the women’s side had risen by 1,000 and that is not a clear picture of the need because we were not tracking the number of families separately. Through November of 2017 we are 33% higher than we were in 2016 (approx. 2,200 more bed nights) and we are still not tracking families separately. Starting on the first of the year we will have a new tracking for single parents with children.

It has become evident to us that we need to do something very soon. We have already run out of family rooms twice this year and there is still a lot of cold weather to come before spring. To put the entire need in perspective, let me give more information. We (the people of the Las Cruces area) have a battered woman’s shelter where they can go for a limited amount of time, the Mesilla Valley Community of Hope which would be very hard for women with children, and us the Las Cruces Gospel Rescue Mission.

So what can be done to mitigate this problem? We would like to do one of two things. The first solution is to build a new building on our existing property. We would propose a three-story totally finished on the exterior and finished as finances allow on the inside. I saw a picture that grabbed my attention but is not what we are proposing, just look at the equipment and construction in progress. The second option is to have someone donate (or sell low) property with an existing functional building on it. This option would increase our expenses in several ways, one of which is more paid staff. Please keep this need in prayer and let friends and family across the country know about our need. This is a cry primarily to help women and children.

Thank you
Henry Young

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