Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer joined Hoboken Shelter Executive Director Jaclyn Cherubini on Thursday to announce that the City of Hoboken would make a contribution of $330,000 available to Shelter for capital improvements.
“The City will make sure that we have a safe and comfortable environment for those in need,” said the Mayor, in her remarks at the Shelter.
The funds will be provided by a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Hoboken’s CDBG funding more than doubled this year (an increase of more than $500,000) as a result of the City’s population exceeding 50,000 in the latest census.
The Hoboken Shelter will undergo a variety of upgrades, including:
- an emergency generator
- renovation of showers and restrooms
- improved sewage and drainage
- enhanced HVAC system
- sprinkler fire suppression system
- upgrades to the kitchen
- energy efficiency measures
Having been in place for 33 years, The Hoboken Shelter is one of only three homeless shelters in Hudson County—providing 500 meals daily to the homeless and working poor, plus accommodation for 50 adults each night and 1,000 showers each week.
“I want to thank all those who work at the Hoboken Shelter for all the work you do in our community,” said 6th Ward Councilwoman Jen Giattino.
NOT JUST A FREE MEAL
Cherubini, the Shelter’s Executive Director, expressed her gratitude, stating, “it’s an honor and a privilege, and we’re truly thankful for this assistance from our City.”
More than just a soup kitchen, the Hoboken Shelter provides vocational programs for those in need, including résumé workshops and culinary arts training.
Shelter guest “KR” fought through tears to say that, “The Shelter has my back. I come here to get clothes, eat, bond and share stories. The Shelter helps us orientate ourselves, allowing us to look at how we got here and help us to help others.”
Another guest, “DM,” spoke up to say that he, “appreciate[s] the encouragement. The people at the Shelter are all good individuals.”
In 2014, the Shelter helped 141 guests become successfully housed.
Mayor Zimmer followed up on statements she had made at the Waterfront Project Summit on Homelessness last Friday, vowing to, “focus on commercial development,” that would in turn, “bring jobs to Hoboken for people of all different backgrounds.”
Furthermore, the Mayor hinted at forthcoming programs working with the American Legion Post 107 to coordinate housing for homeless veterans, as well as a better county-wide collaboration aimed at filling gaps in services to those most vulnerable.
“The goal is to address and end homelessness—one person at a time,” said Cherubini.
Conveying concerns from our readers, hMAG asked the Hoboken Shelter what we can do in the event of a conflict with a homeless individual. The message we got loud and clear is that they aim to be proactive.
If anyone is having problems with the homeless on their property (sleeping/loitering), please reach out to the Hoboken Shelter at 201-656-5069, or email Keith Jackson – Shelter and Programs Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Working together, we can mitigate the impact of homelessness not only on our community, but on the individuals enduring this most unfortunate ordeal.