FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 4, 2023
CONTACT: Don Tanner
New Emergency Night Shelter in River Rouge Opens its Doors to Homeless
Wayne Metro, ChristNet, Wayne County and MSHDA again partner to help homeless
RIVER ROUGE, Mich. – Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency and ChristNet Services today opened a new $3.6 million-dollar overnight shelter for residents experiencing homelessness at 1230 Coolidge Hwy in River Rouge. Funding for the project was made possible by a funding collaborative between Wayne Metro, Christnet Services, Michigan State Housing Development Authority and Wayne County.
The 7,952-square foot shelter is located on the site of a long vacant former youth center. The building has undergone complete interior and exterior renovation work. The facility has been adapted to provide a safe and reconfigurable overnight shelter service for up to 30 individuals per night, year-round. The facility can be converted into a community space during the day, after shelter guests leave each morning.
The project is the latest phase in the partnership’s goal of providing community hubs of vital assistance available 24/7, 365-days a year, filling a major gap in resources for people without housing that became more evident during the COVID-19 pandemic. In September 2022, the partners opened a $700,000 daytime service center at 25275 Eureka Road in Taylor.
“We are grateful to MSHDA and Wayne County for allocating funds in this way to ensure that those with the least access to basic needs, housing and shelter are not left out in the cold,” said Louis D. Piszker, CEO of Wayne Metro. “We also appreciate the city of River Rouge for being so welcoming and recognizing the shared responsibilities of Out-Wayne County Coalition communities to help those in need.”
“This partnership between Wayne Metro and ChristNet Services ensures that everyone seeking emergency shelter can receive whatever assistance they need, and be treated with the care, compassion and dignity they deserve,” said ChristNet co-founder Rev. Geoff Drutchas.
Congresswoman Debbie Dingell provided vital federal support for project development and construction, designating the first ever direct appropriation of $1.8 million to the initiative from Congress to Wayne Metro.
“This shelter will support and protect so many people who need help the most. Access to safe housing is a basic human right and I am proud to have secured federal funding to help Wayne Metro open its doors and provide this critical service to Downriver residents,” said Dingell. “I will continue to work to ensure our communities have the resources they need to care for our most vulnerable populations.”
Prior to the establishment of these two centers, emergency shelter was only available October through May at rotating church locations throughout Wayne County. Now, services are provided and accessible day and night, winter and summer for Wayne County’s homeless population.
About Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency
For more than 50 years, Wayne Metro has worked to eliminate poverty in Wayne County by providing economic independence programs that nurture families and build communities. The organization serves as a lifeline for residents – and its impact increased exponentially during the COVID-19 pandemic – by providing assistance to those in need with rent, utilities, home repairs, food and other essentials, education, childcare and more. For more information, visit www.waynemetro.org or follow Wayne Metro on Facebook (@waynemetro), Twitter (@WayneMetroCAA) or Instagram (@waynemetro).
Over the past three decades, the largely volunteer-based ChristNet has long been an area leader in providing services to those in need of emergency shelter without homes through a network of more than fifty churches. For more information, visit www.christnetservices.org.