Shelter Home expansion 'on time and on budget'

Feb. 03, 2013 @ 05:40 AM

Trying to shuffle paperwork amid the noise of hammers and drills might prove difficult. To Sharon Poarch, the noise is music to her ears.

Poarch is executive director of the Shelter Home of Caldwell County, which is entering the final leg of its two-year expansion project. For her, the hammers and drills means more shelter space for victims of domestic violence.

By May, the home will have 40 beds instead of 21. A glassed-in play area for children will have been added, and staff will have a new conference/training room, a reception area, and new offices. Eight bedrooms will have been added, as well as a new lobby, a commercial kitchen and a bigger laundry area.

With an ever-increasing demand for services, the expansion was sorely needed, according to Poarch.

“We are good stewards and dedicated advocates, this project has nothing to do with being bigger or newer,” Poarch said. “It’s about finding a comfortable space for residents and staff.”

A capital campaign was launched two years ago. The project would not be cheap -- almost $1.2 million would be needed. The N.C. Housing Finance Agency provided $500,000, and a bank loan provided $340,000. Under the term of the loan, the debit will be forgiven as long as the shelter home continues to fulfill its mission of providing emergency and support services for victims/survivors of domestic violence, rape and sexual assault, and their children. The shelter must raise the final $310,000. So far, $200,000 has been raised.

“We’ve been very pleased with the project so far,” Poarch said. “We’re on time and on budget, and are continuing to fill the remainder of our capital budget needs.”