Amsterdam homeless shelter slated to open Monday
Posted at: 11/01/2012 5:33 PM
| Updated at: 11/01/2012 6:03 PM
By: Abigail Bleck
AMSTERDAM--A renovated building on East Main Street will soon become a home to Amsterdam's homeless.
"It's a community. We want to help out community and give everyone from Amsterdam a way out," explains Omar Serrano, the director of the shelter and employee of Interfaith Partnership for the Homeless in Montgomery County.
Before now, the city's homeless--some 91 families reached out for help during the past two years--were put up in a rental or they traveled to Schenectady or Albany for shelter. That made an already challenging situation even worse; just because someone is homeless, doesn't mean they don't have a job or roots in Amsterdam.
"People who are homeless don't have transportation so it's very important to accommodate people in your community," says Serrano.
Volunteers and staff are still putting on the finishing touches in the building that can house eight people, between the months of November and April. And besides rooms, facilities and a kitchen, there will be an office where residents can work on their resume and apply for jobs.
"Just a little bump (up), that's what we're all about we're about...helping you get to the next level," says Serrano.
Potential residents must contact Montgomery County DSS for placement during business hours and the Sheriff's Department on nights and weekends.
"We will have staff 24/7 and be here to accommodate the less fortunate," adds Serrano. ," ad
The shelter's staff will be at the St. Mary's Hospital cafeteria Friday between 11:30 and 1p signing up volunteers.