Homeless shelter in Elizabeth City forced to shut its doors

Posted at 6:43 PM, Sep 18, 2013
and last updated 2013-09-18 18:43:47-04

Elizabeth City, N.C. - A homeless shelter for women and children will be closing its doors at the end of the month after 4 years in the community.

The Garden of Hope House, located on Herrington Rd., no longer has enough funding to remain open.

It's heartbreaking for the women who use the shelter.

"My world just fell apart when I heard the news," said Lisa Bunch, who is currently living at the shelter.

Bunch has lived at the Garden of Hope House for the past year after a serious medical condition left her unable to work.

"I had this infection in my leg from some type of bug bite, and it just kept spreading and spreading, and they couldn't figure out what was wrong," said Bunch, "I lost my job, lost my income and lost my place to stay, so I was left with nothing."

The shelter has given her a home while she's healed, and now that she can walk again, she's starting to look for work.

But until she has a steady income, she doesn't know where she'll go now that the shelter is closing up.

And she's not the only one.

"I get a lot of calls and sometimes they are heart-wrenching," said Gloria Holmes, Resident Manager. "For those that don't have an income, what are they going to do?"

Holmes is still hoping something can be done to save the shelter. She says they've reached out to another organization in the hopes that they can take on this shelter.

In the meantime, the residents are taking it one day at a time and holding out hope that the shelter can find a way to stay open.

"I said [to the residents], 'Don't worry about it.  Things are going to be okay.  We're just going to have to put it in the Lord's hands and let Him take care of it,'" said Holmes.