New Brunswick

Fredericton's Grace House set to open new shelter within a month

A series of large donations to the women's homeless shelter, Grace House, in Fredericton has allowed for renovations to begin on a new building which is nearly ready to open next door to the current facility.

Warren Maddox says $80,000 of renovations are underway including an education space

Renovations at the new Grace House facility, which is located next door to the current Grace House, are underway and the building should be ready to accommodate homeless women within a month. (Shane Fowler/CBC)

A series of large donations to the women's homeless shelter, Grace House, in Fredericton has allowed for renovations to begin on a new building which is nearly ready to open next door to the current facility.

Warren Maddox, executive director of the Fredericton Homeless Shelters, says the $80,000 raised through a challenge from the J.T. Clark Family Foundation has been a "godsend."

"They came back to us and said, 'We'll do a challenge grant — so if you raise $40,000 we'll match it,' and that pretty much will take care of the renovation project for that one building," Maddox said.
Executive director of the Fredericton Homeless Shelters, Warren Maddox, says a group of more than 12 donors came up with $40,000 in donations which was matched by the J.T. Clark Family Foundation.

The money is going toward several renovations to the women's shelter which will house up to 13 women. Once the improvements are made there will be three bathrooms rather than just one.

"It adds to our mandate which is ... to restore the dignity of an individual," Maddox said.

Employee Meghan Gulliver is looking forward to the addition of an education centre which will be another major improvement.

"Education is a really important, big step for anyone living in this type of situation," she said.

"We live in the new media age so getting essential skills is vital because we're learning more and more that technology is a part of every job."

Maddox says the new education centre will include a space for women to complete their general education diploma.

"They can take different essential skills training and also in terms of looking for apartments, looking for work — it's just a much quieter place to be able to do work."

Renovations are expected to be completed within three weeks and Maddox says the goal is to open the new facility within a month.

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