Glens Falls mission opens temporary Code Blue shelter

January 07, 2018 12:00 AM

GLENS FALLS -- If it was not for some generous hearts, Skip might be spending his night in the freezing cold.

“My family won't take me in,” Skip said. “My family doesn't want me.”

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That painful reality brings the Hudson Falls native to tears. 

Homeless and addicted to alcohol for 20 years, Skip turns to The Open Door Mission in Glens Falls for warm meals.

“It's not just food, they provide clothing and services for the people in this community,” he said. 

For four years, the Lawrence Street soup kitchen has been operating a code blue shelter for the homeless at rented locations on freezing winter nights.

“We are the only shelter even at code blue just in Warren and Washington County that I know of other than for teens,” said The Open Door Mission President and CEO, Kim Cook. 

The mission is building a new Warren Street facility that will become a year-round shelter.

However, Cook said they have hit a snag with construction

“We are hoping to have our water and sewer taken care of in about three weeks,” Cook said. “Really I don't know.”

That's where the House of Grace of the Adirondacks comes in. 

“The House of Grace was opened to provide a home like setting for folks that are in their last weeks of life.” 

However, the hospice facility has been closed for over 2 years due to a lack of funding. 

“I thought well the house of grace is sitting there,” said Board President, Mark Griffin. “The heat is on. The lights are on.” 

So Griffin is letting Open Door operate their code blue shelter out of its Henry Street facility until Open Door’s new building is complete. 

The efforts are not just about giving the homeless a place to sleep. 

“Some of them are dealing with addiction, mental illness,” Cook said. “But most people are who needs him relationship and need somebody to work beside them.”

For skip, on freezing cold nights, that can really warm the heart.

“These people have made me feel like I don't have to live life alone,” Skip said. 

The open door mission is still accepting donations to complete its warren street facility. 

Visit and click on links to find out how you can help.


Nia Hamm

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