Salina Grace Community Resource Center Expands Services and Collaborations in New Location

Salina Grace Community Resource Center Expands Services and Collaborations in New Location

After a long and worthwhile process, the Salina Grace Community Resource Center has opened its doors to a new location. The organization promises expanded services and collaborations aimed at supporting individuals experiencing homelessness and other challenges. The journey to this new location was full of diligence, but the organization remains committed to its mission of serving the community's most vulnerable members. The new location can be found at 315 South Broadway Boulevard.

The process in the move was slightly delayed primarily due to the sale of the property the organization had initially eyed for relocation. "The property we were looking at was being sold (not to us)," explained Salina Grace Executive Director Chad Young, the driving force behind the center. "We needed to wait on the sale to complete and then work with the new owner on a lease."

The new location boasts increased square footage, a much-needed upgrade from the cramped conditions of the previous site located on 7th Street. "While serving between 50-60 people per day in our original location, often times having adequate space was an issue," shared Young. "This larger space will help us to not feel quite as crowded as well as give people the opportunity to put some space between themselves."

There is a City-Go bus stop on Broadway making it easily accessible for those using public transportation. In addition to providing a safe day-shelter, the Community Resource Center offers a range of services, including assistance with filling out applications, obtaining identification documents, and connecting individuals with relevant agencies and programs.

In 2023 alone, the organization served 682 individuals, assisted 449 individuals with filling out various applications, helped 208 people obtain an ID, served 72 veterans, and assisted 49 individuals in transitioning from the streets to a local shelter or into a housing program.

One of the center's most utilized programs is the Welcome Table, a feeding ministry provided by Christ’s Cathedral Episcopal Church, now housed within the Community Resource Center. The initiative has garnered support from several other churches, reflecting a collective effort to address food insecurity among the homeless population.

The center will also host organizations such as People In Need (P.I.N.), offering payee services, and Central Kansas Mental Health Center (CKMHC), providing essential mental health support. These collaborations aim to provide comprehensive care and support to individuals in need, addressing both immediate and long-term challenges.

Looking ahead, Salina Grace remains open to the possibility of establishing a full-service homeless shelter but emphasizes the importance of evaluating current programs and collaborations first. "Our first priority is on continuing to develop collaborative efforts and evaluating the success of our programs before we decide on a next step," Young explained.

The decision to change locations stemmed from a series of discussions among various agencies, including law enforcement and social service organizations, highlighting the need for a coordinated approach to address the community's most pressing issues. The move represents a significant step forward in fulfilling the center's mission and better serving those in need.

As the center prepares to open its doors in the new location, Salina Grace remains mindful of the challenges ahead. "The reality is homelessness exists. It's growing," Young remarked. "There are both personal issues and societal issues that need to be addressed. And, there is no quick fix solution. We must work together as a community to help people break free from what binds them."

With its expanded facilities and strengthened partnerships, the Salina Grace Community Resource Center stands ready to continue its vital work in supporting and empowering individuals in the community.

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