Hope for the Homeless in Belleville

For the past two years I've worked on the front lines of street ministry in downtown Belleville. In this time I have made friends with an eclectic group of people, people who challenge, inspire, encourage and teach me. And in those 2 years I have watched many of these friends find themselves in a housing crisis. On some occassions I brought these friends home with me, put them up in our guest room or a small retro trailer in my backyard. Other times I advocated for them, trying to arrange some sort of temporary solution. Too many times I watched a friend in distress leave at the end of the night with nowhere to go. Every time, I was reminded that Belleville desperately needs a homeless shelter.

Every night in Belleville, there are people with nowhere to go. Some sleep on park benches or apartment building lobbies or a friends couch. Some sleep in their car or in a tent in the woods. Some stay awake all night in a 24 hour coffee shop.

When I was 19 and working at a drop-in centre in downtown Ottawa I would often daydream about starting a shelter. Not just any shelter, but one with a focus on community, mentorship, and dignity. Shaped by my readings of Henri Nouwen and Jean Vanier and Brennan Manning, this was a shelter where people werent just housed, but welcomed, embraced, and built up.  At the time, in my daydreams, the shelter was in an old motel, 2 single beds in each room, and residents working side by side with volunteers in the kitchen. This dream was called Grace Inn. Marriage and motherhood put this dream on a back burner. But friendship has brought this dream back to life.

Starting in 2017, Grace Inn will be a 10 to 15 bed emergency shelter for adults in downtown Belleville, with a special focus on dignity, community and mentorship. But we can't do it without you.

Will you partner with us to bring hope, dignity and safety to the homeless in Belleville?

Will you help us make the friendly city just a little bit friendlier? 

>>>>p.s. 100% of the funds we recieve through this campaign will be used to start and operate a homeless shelter in Belleville. Nobody is taking a salary from this.  Every donation helps make Grace Inn a reality.<<<

Visit our website at www.graceinnshelter.com to learn more or sign up to volunteer!


Kelly Oribine
Belleville, ON

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