Brunswick Partnership for Housing opens new space for homeless families

A new home just opened up in Brunswick County to help people who don’t have a roof over their head and a bed to sleep in each night.
Published: Jul. 30, 2023 at 9:30 PM EDT
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BRUNSWICK COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) - A new home just opened up in Brunswick County to help people who don’t have a roof over their head and a bed to sleep in each night.

“Homelessness is one of the leading causes of trauma for children. And when trauma hits children at young ages, neuro pathways actually rewire. And so children can’t learn or they develop adaptive mechanisms that aren’t necessarily healthy. So what we really wanted to do was bring those families into a safe environment where they really could just relax, let the chaos and the trauma settle, get back on their feet,” said Sally Learned, executive director of the Brunswick Partnership for Housing.

Helping children hits close to home for Learned. She says the Felton-Russell House is a transitional home for families who fell on hard times.

“So we are getting more and more calls in our community from those families with children. They are living in sheds, they’re sleeping in their cars, they’re couch surfing from apartment to apartment and house to house. In unsafe situations”

Learned says having a place that’s safe can sometimes make all the difference in a person’s life. Learned says families that stay in the home will follow case management plans as they work towards more permanent housing. Working families are also welcome to stay for a year on average.

“Families in our community in our county that are working, that are providing services, working in stores, retail, working in hospitals, working for law enforcement, first responders, and they cannot find affordable housing.”

The house has two, one bedroom and two bedroom units, along with one handicap unit. Each space comes fully stocked with food and other necessities to help support families.

The handicapped unit is made for homeless people just released from the hospital who need post care. People in the handicapped unit are able to stay for up to nine months while rebuilding their lives.

Jamie Stokley is the CEO of Helping Hands of the Cape Fear. Stokley partnered with Brunswick Partnership for Housing to help provide care for those in need.

“You know, I frequently asked the question ‘How will we provide home care to individuals if they don’t have a home?’ So it’s vital to us to ensure that they have housing first, that way we come in and provide those services to them, just to ensure that they have some type of permanent house solution,” said Stokley.

Together, Learned, Stokely and many others making sure families can stay afloat.

“What we want to do is give folks hope, homelessness to hope that yes, they can get their feet back under them,” said Learned.