Community kitchen preparing shelter for homeless people forced to move
A new report showed unsafe levels of hazardous materials in the soil at the site known as "Tent City."
The clock is ticking for a homeless group told to leave the property they live on. A new report showed unsafe levels of hazardous materials in the soil at the site known as "Tent City."
On Friday, the Chattanooga Community Kitchen will open its doors for overnight stays.
For those who don't have a place to call home, the Chattanooga Community Kitchen is where they can go for support.
"Get up, walk there, get something to eat and we're real close to everything right here," said Malcolm Amicarelli.
Amicarelli lives on the property that the city says he will have to vacate soon because of a new report listing the site as hazardous.
"It’s been quite an ordeal for a lot of them because it's very uncertain now what's going to happen,” said David Costellow with the Community Kitchen.
The community kitchen hopes they can ease that uncertainty, at least for now.
"Our mission is to meet the basic needs and help them find self-sufficiency as well,” he explained.
Starting Friday, they will re-open their cold weather overnight shelter for those that are being forced to uproot. It’s not cheap to operate a shelter for a hundred people, with each night costing about $600.
An emergency fund from the mayor’s office will front $15,000.
"We keep supplies on hand all the time if something of this nature or a weather-related nature happens then we can be ready to go,” he said.
For the next two weeks, caseworkers will also work with people to find more permanent housing options.
"Give them a little stability so hopefully that'll give them some time to be able to get somewhere they can feel safe and stable for a while,” Costellow said.
For Amicarelli, the Community Kitchen is not an option because he owns a pet. Now the clock is ticking to find a place to go.
"There’s probably, I know of at least eight people that have pets, what do we do? Walk around all night?" he said.