Need for New Construction
Since opening our doors in 1991, Bethlehem House has successfully operated in an early 1900′s Victorian home at 930 Faulkner Street. Now, the house is close to 100 years old and in need of immeasurable costly repairs. Because of the growing need to provide shelter, we have rented two additional properties to increase our capacity to 35 residents and ten staff members.
Homelessness is on the rise according to the National Alliance to End Homelessness report in January 2009, with an expected additional 1.5 million Americans homeless over the next two years.
In Faulkner County alone, we have over 200 homeless individuals. The National Center on Family Homelessness tells us that the largest growing population of homeless is families with children. Recent estimates are that over the course of a year one in 50 children (some 1.5 million) in the U.S. live in homeless families. Bethlehem House recently had nine children living with their parents in the shelter. Many families in our community are one major life event, such as severe illness or loss of employment, away from being homeless.
Course of Action
The Board of Directors of Bethlehem House, Inc. has determined that a modern sustainable shelter must be constructed to provide continuing services to the homeless. The new building will incorporate the following features:
- Accommodations for 35 residents and ten staff members in one facility
- Space for Emergency Shelter for up to eight people, which is not provided in Faulkner, Perry or Conway Counties at this time
- A modern kitchen for efficient food preparation
- Dining space for residents and the hungry in our community (25-30 additional people join us for dinner each night)
Current Status of the Building Project
The following goals have been achieved towards building or securing a 7,241 square foot facility, which will serve as the new location of Bethlehem House:
- Hueston Consulting Group, LLC completed a favorable feasibility for a capital campaign
- A Development Coordinator was hired to assist with the capital campaign and ongoing fundraising
- 1.15 acres of land was purchased at the corner of Faulkner and Duncan
- The process of cultivating significant financial gifts for the building is already underway. An estimated $379,500 in cash gifts and pledges are already secured
- A preliminary site and floor plan have been drafted. Stan Hobbs from Nabholz has programmed the building designs and calculated cost-projection estimates for the building, with a target start-date for late Spring 2012
- For more information about the Capital Campaign, please contact Jill Imboden at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 501-329-4862.