Community Crossroads Center residents, donors and volunteers can expect to see an expansion of both the center’s structure and services following the Pitt County Board of Commissioners’ allocation of $1 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds to CCC operations.
Commissioners voted in a 6-3 decision to approve $1 million in support of current and future operations at CCC, particularly for the design and construction of a new building for expanded services that is expected to break ground in the near future.
The building, designed to be both cost-effective and efficient, will provide additional space for CCC programs that are aimed to promote long-term self-sufficiency for residents, such as educational programs and medical care.
“With the support of the county, the city and private sector, we’re poised to resume and expand our services provided by the shelter so we are able to not only offer a clean bed and warm meal, but perhaps more importantly offer resources to restore self-efficacy and confidence so our residents can leave the shelter prepared to lead productive lives,” said Robert Cherry, member of the Board of Directors for CCC.
Over the past year, the center has provided congregate housing to 46 men and women through emergency shelter supervised by five full-time staff members. CCC has also provided nearly 55,000 meals to residents at a cost of approximately $140,000.
Additionally, the center has provided housing to 144 families, 66 of which received aid through the county’s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program while 48 who faced homelessness were provided non-congregate, temporary housing.
“While these services provided are necessary and life-sustaining, the current physical footprint of the center limits our ability to provide other important services and resources, such as family rooms for parents with children, respite care for fragile residents of the shelter, services for children including housing and after-school care, job counseling and medical care,” Cherry said.
Each year, CCC is sustained by the donations of private groups and individual donors that make up approximately 80% of the center’s annual budget, while only 20% is funded by government-sponsored grants.
The center is prepared to launch a capital campaign, Cherry said, and is working alongside private donors who are equally prepared to match the ARPA funds allocated by Pitt County commissioners.
“We’ve been sustained through the years by strong community support,” Cherry continued. “Over 80% of our center’s support is from an operating budget that comes from private groups, churches and businesses, and community-minded individuals.”
Commissioners were recommended to approve a total allocation of $4 million in ARPA funds to six homeless and housing resources in Pitt County, including the allocation of $1 million for CCC expansion and operations.
While three of nine county commissioners voted in dissent against the allocation, several commissioners made comments in strong support of the recommendations.
Commissioners Ann Floyd Huggins and Melvin C. McLawhorn each expressed a need for homeless and housing resources for the Pitt County community, while Commissioner Beth Ward followed in support.
While Commissioner Christopher Nunnally emphasized the need for long-term solutions to homelessness, he voiced considerable support for the allocation of funds to the projects listed, particularly those of brick and mortar.
“I’m satisfied that there’s a good mixture of funds that are being directed toward brick and mortar, that are building infrastructure out in our community, that will be around for the future … because the homelessness problem is not a temporary problem, it’ll be a community problem forever,” Nunnally said to fellow commissioners. “But having those facilities and being able to meet people where they are, that’s of critical importance.”
CCC is currently awaiting approval of additional ARPA funds that will be presented to the Greenville City Council on August 7 at 6 p.m.