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Hope Ministries teams up with Winter Amnesty, Renaissance District

On the 1st day of December, Hope Ministries is helping the homeless in South Bend. 

The Hope and Warm project is underway, teaming up with the Winter Amnesty program and working with the Renaissance District on the physical part of solving the homelessness problem. 

The team wants to come up with a practical, simple solution to building trust with the homeless community.

Organizers have been meeting once a month to discuss how to keep the homeless warm.

"The encouraging thing is there are a lot of people having those conversations now. Business leaders here in the Renaissance District and a number of other people have been getting together and talking regularly about what does a long-term solution that provides year round housing for people not just overnight emergency shelter. What does that look like?" said David Vanderveen, executive director of Hope Ministries. 

As part as the Winter Amnesty service plan, members opened up a new location on Monroe Street Thursday.

Members say this location will shelter up to 30 men for overnight stays.

"I've talked to US Marshall, and I’ve talked to experts in these areas, and I say ‘Well are we doing best practices?’ And the answers are no. Okay, well what best practices could be implemented right away? So we'll be implementing those, so I've talked with JPR and asked for their help to do a study of the block directly associated to the Hope rescue mission," said Kevin Smith, founder of Renaissance District.

Hope is looking at other cities to see if they can implement the same plan and open more locations.

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