Statesboro's first homeless shelter helping people get on their feet

STATESBORO, GA (WTOC) - Founders of Statesboro's first homeless shelter say they're helping people and addressing an issue many didn't know existed.

Judy sits in the workroom and makes Christmas wreaths. She and her daughter were living in their car before they came to Open Hearts Community Mission.

"One person would sleep and the other person would stay awake and be the lookout," Judy said.

The mission can house two dozen men and women, along with two families, at a time. Part of the funding comes from local churches pooling their money to help others.

"Churches were, not complaining, but voicing concerns that they didn't have a place for people to go," Board Chair Deliah Mobley said.

Fundraising really took off when supporters started an annual 5k race to benefit the mission.

"I don't know of a single mission anywhere that's been birthed in a community with such inclusive support," Executive Director Rev. Jim Lewis said.

He says they work with residents to help them through a plan to get back on their feet.

"If you don't have a job, your job is to get a job," Rev. Lewis said.

Judy's making money selling these decorations and saving every penny.

"I sure wouldn't' want to be back out there sleeping in a car because it can get dangerous," Judy said.

"I haven't come across a lazy person up here. They all take ownership of the place," Mobley said.

They'll officially dedicate the building Sunday afternoon.

Copyright 2017 WTOC. All rights reserved.