Southern Illinois homeless shelters face economic difficulties

Williamson County Crisis Center

HARRISBURG,IL — The National Alliance to End Homelessness says every night 282 people don’t have a roof over their heads in southern Illinois. Meanwhile, a homeless shelter in Williamson County recently shut down.

When you call the Williamson County Family Crisis Center, you get a voicemail that tells you it’s permanently closed.

Mona Crim from Christian Community Compassion Center in Harrisburg said southern Illinois homeless shelters are struggling to keep their doors open.

“It’s difficult when your’re in small southern Illinois town and you don’t have all the funding you need,” Crim said. “Most of the time we are supplied by the community. This is not a government ran organization.”

Christian Community Compassion Center

Everything inside the Christian Community Compassion Center was donated by the community. Without that support, the shelter wouldn’t be able to stay open.

Many people don’t know there’s a homelessness problem, because they don’t see it. “A lot of times they don’t see the homeless unless they’re on the curb begging for money. If they mix into the community like we do, then they don’t notice them as homeless,” said Crim.

To keep the shelters open, the community needs to recognize the problem.

“It does take everybody in the community to look, realize it is important for us to help,” said Crim.

The Christian Community Compassion Center is planning to expand its space. To find out how you can help visit 4cshbg.org.