Open Door Ministries of High Point is exploring the feasibility of establishing a day center for the homeless in the city of High Point.

The planning effort—a collaborative initiative being led by High Point Councilmember Cyril Jefferson – would entail Open Door Ministries working with other partners in the community. 

This week some city leaders expressed a need for a homeless center in Guilford County’s second largest city.

Open Door Ministries is a non-profit that was established to prevent hunger and homelessness through “advocacy, education, housing and coordination of services.”  The organization was established in 1995 by a merger of Urban Ministries and the Open Door Shelter.

Joe Blankinship, the chair of the Board of Directors of Open Door Ministries, said this idea is one whose time has come.

“A day center in High Point has been talked about for many years and would be a transformational blessing to the members of our community experiencing homelessness,” he said. “We are excited about this new opportunity, and will be looking closely at the details of any plans to make sure we serve High Point as best as we can.”

The opening of a day center for the homeless would take a phased approach. The first phase includes researching existing day centers with successful business models and looking at best practices.

So, where would the money come from? 

Backers point out that funding for the initiative is earmarked in the High Point City Council’s 2021 Strategic Plan – though that has yet to be approved by the City Council.  It will be voted on the last day of June and there has been a favorable recommendation from City Council’s Community Development subcommittee.

Ryan Ross, executive director of Open Door Ministries, said this week that the organization is “thrilled about the opportunity to further support our neighbors experiencing homelessness.” He added, “We are blessed by the progress this project has made with community stakeholders.”