HIGH POINT, N.C. — There are 68 men who call Open Door Ministries in High Point home.
The shelter provides them a place to stay but is also focused on finding them jobs, giving them training to enhance their skills and helping with housing.
“They’ve got about everything you can think of to try to help you get a job,” said James Creech, a resident at Open Door Ministries.
He’s lived at the shelter before and is grateful for the Community Foundation grant that is providing more resources.
“He is a very able-bodied worker. I’ve known him from the past and he can’t wait to get out there,” said
Shelter Director William Bohaboy.
The grant helped the shelters buy bicycle helmets, as well as chains and locks for the half-dozen bikes donated by a local church. That means James can get to job interviews faster.
“Instead of having to walk all the way there, you’re not sweating and everything when you get to the interviews and you can hit a lot more different places where the buses don’t actually travel to put in applications,” Creech said.
And there are other conveniences of peddling to the interview.
“The bus is a little bit challenging for our guys when the jobs are second or third shift. The bicycles allow something like a three mile walk to turn into a simple ten minute, 15 minute ride down the road,” said Bohaboy.
The shelter director also used part of the grant money to hire a second case worker to help reduce the time men spend there. But to leave, they need to make money. That’s where Guilford Technical Community College comes in.
“We have GTCC here twice a week to do job classes and guys have gotten work straight from those classes. They have gone right up to Sonic. I’ve sent them over to Marsh Furniture Company to register and do some job searching and that has produced a lot of great success,” said Bohaboy.
The men are enrolled in quick career programs which gets them ready for jobs in weeks or months.
“I appreciate them actually doing this for us,” said Creech.
The grant is also being used for making security deposits and to pay the first month of rent as the shelter works to find these men housing.