House of Mercy plans new homeless shelter
by: Tracy Schuhmacher
The House of Mercy is seeking donations to renovate and expand a building at 285 Ormond St. to serve as a homeless shelter and the nonprofit organization’s home base. The charity is run by 81-year-old Sister Grace Miller, who has been a tireless and sometimes provocative advocate for the homeless for 30 years.
The Ormond Street building was suggested to the House of Mercy by one of its homeless clients, and anonymous donor purchased the building for the charity. To date, 60 percent of the funds have been raised from private donors and others. It is now reaching out to the community for the remaining funds, which will allow for the completion of the renovations and two years of operating expenses.
The 15,000-square-foot Armond Street location, more than triple the size of the organization’s current Hudson Avenue site, will include approximately 90 beds. It will also have a commercial kitchen and dining room to accommodate more than 100 people, both of which do not exist at the current location. The building will also offer a chapel, laundry area, outdoor patio, conference room and offices to assist with case management. It will be one of the largest homeless shelters and service providers in upstate New York.