With three weeks to go before a Thanksgiving Day deadline, Loring Henderson, Lawrence Community Shelter director, said donations — large and small — are rolling in to make a new shelter a reality.
“I just can’t tell you how good I feel,” Henderson said. So far, the shelter has raised more than $300,000 of the $800,000 it needs to receive a $540,000 Mabee Foundation matching grant. “Makes me feel really positive about Lawrence.”
Shelter officials and community leaders recently announced a $1.7 million agreement to purchase a 25,000-square-foot warehouse at 3701 Franklin Park Circle, just east of Douglas County Jail. With renovations, the total cost of the project is estimated at $2.7 million. While the shelter has secured a variety of grants and funds for the new location, the matching grant will allow it to continue moving forward.
Shelter officials say the plan is to move to the new shelter — which will have 125 beds, compared with the current 75-bed shelter at 214 W. 10th St. — within the next year.
In addition to more beds, plans for the new shelter include family areas and meeting spaces.
Donations can be sent to the shelter, 214 W. 10th St., Lawrence 66044, or made online at lawrenceshelter.org.