Fort Wayne's homeless don't have to go without during Stay-At-Home order

Many were concerned about the homeless when the Stay-At-Home orders went into effect for Indiana and Ohio. They're not receiving all the help they normally get, but local groups are working to solve that problem.

Posted: Mar 25, 2020 7:10 AM
Updated: Mar 25, 2020 10:29 AM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) -- Homelessness is a struggle all on its own, but throw in a global pandemic and even more problems arise.

How to stay clean, where the next meal is coming from, where to sleep at night.

All have become harder thanks to COVID-19.

To relieve some of that burden, Governor Holcomb’s executive order states that “individuals experiencing homelessness are exempt from this provision but are strongly urged to obtain shelter.”

Mayor Tom Henry says he recognizes the issues the homeless are facing and says his team and other community organizations are stepping up to help.

"They are trying to address it the best we can through the Associated Churches and other organizations. Other social agencies are trying to step up as well, but there’s no question it is a challenge," Henry said.

The Rescue Mission is one of those organizations stepping up.

COO Sam Hardy says things have changed around their buildings since the first COVID-19 meeting back on March 4.

Hardy explained, "We were making a lot of adjustments to ensure the safety of everyone in our building and we would be able to continue to provide the necessary services that many on the margins of our community depend on us for.”

They have moved their emergency shelter to an off-site, anonymous location, and aren’t letting program residents out of their buildings except for necessary appointments.

However, they aren’t denying those on the streets some of the services they need.

"We did eliminate our breakfast meal program, but we are still operating our lunch and our dinner service programs, but those are happening through prepared meals. Primarily bagged meals," Hardy said. "We also brought in a shower trailer and port-o-johns that are in the east parking lot here to continue to provide the best of the services that can."

So while some of the services may look different for the homeless, they don’t have to totally go without during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hardy said that if you or someone you know is struggling during the Stay-At-Home order and the COVID-19 pandemic, they're encouraged to call the local social services available and they should have someone available to provide help the best they can.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 77565

Reported Deaths: 3105
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion16304733
Lake7840283
Elkhart499287
Allen4103164
St. Joseph368183
Hamilton2941104
Vanderburgh208215
Hendricks1972109
Cass18099
Johnson1800119
Porter139139
Clark133350
Tippecanoe126312
Madison104866
LaPorte95730
Howard93865
Kosciusko87212
Bartholomew84447
Floyd83750
Marshall80123
Monroe77732
Delaware76852
Vigo75213
Dubois71812
Noble70829
Boone70446
Hancock69439
Jackson6065
Warrick60030
Shelby57228
LaGrange56910
Grant53230
Dearborn52228
Morgan49235
Henry46020
Clinton4564
Wayne40210
White38011
Montgomery36321
Lawrence35827
Harrison35524
Decatur34732
Putnam3288
Daviess28420
Miami2792
Scott27810
Jasper2592
Greene25634
Franklin24915
Gibson2434
DeKalb2424
Jennings23212
Ripley2208
Steuben2173
Fayette2057
Carroll2033
Perry18813
Posey1810
Starke1817
Orange17924
Wabash1795
Wells1782
Fulton1742
Jefferson1722
Knox1681
Whitley1606
Tipton15416
Sullivan1521
Washington1481
Clay1415
Spencer1393
Randolph1325
Huntington1303
Newton12110
Adams1202
Owen1101
Jay940
Rush914
Pulaski841
Fountain762
Brown752
Blackford662
Pike660
Ohio656
Benton630
Vermillion610
Parke591
Switzerland560
Martin500
Crawford480
Union410
Warren251
Unassigned0207

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 105426

Reported Deaths: 3755
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin19124533
Cuyahoga13999519
Hamilton9917260
Lucas5544324
Montgomery4544101
Summit3712224
Butler307064
Marion295245
Mahoning2644258
Pickaway240442
Stark1931142
Warren187739
Lorain186777
Columbiana169960
Trumbull1578111
Fairfield144933
Delaware137819
Licking136751
Clark121815
Lake115443
Wood110158
Clermont98111
Medina97736
Miami88139
Allen81746
Tuscarawas80114
Portage78063
Greene74212
Mercer66813
Belmont62826
Richland62612
Erie61928
Ashtabula58046
Madison58010
Wayne56759
Geauga56545
Ross5204
Darke42529
Huron4135
Hancock4103
Sandusky40717
Ottawa40527
Athens3642
Holmes3316
Lawrence3230
Auglaize2866
Union2771
Scioto2601
Muskingum2561
Seneca2424
Jefferson2403
Preble2192
Shelby2194
Knox2189
Putnam21517
Washington21222
Coshocton1999
Champaign1922
Morrow1852
Hardin18012
Crawford1775
Clinton1746
Highland1692
Logan1692
Perry1643
Fulton1581
Ashland1563
Defiance1554
Wyandot1559
Brown1502
Williams1393
Fayette1260
Henry1242
Hocking1229
Guernsey1217
Carroll1145
Monroe9418
Pike800
Gallia781
Jackson780
Van Wert732
Paulding720
Adams682
Meigs630
Vinton322
Morgan310
Harrison261
Noble190
Unassigned00
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