Shirley’s Shelter Holds Open House

A local shelter unveils its newest addition designed to help those in need of a place to stay.

Shirley’s Shelter for the Homeless held an open house Sunday at its men’s shelter on South Alexander Street in Toccoa.

Shirley Combs, who runs the shelter, said the open house gave people a chance to see a new apartment constructed at the shelter.

“We just got the apartment, where the carport was, renovated so right now, we are able to do a transition with a small family,” said Combs. “Be able to help them out for a few days if they do not have anywhere else to live.”

Shirley’s Shelter started back in 2007 and the men’s shelter has been in place at this location for a couple of years, but work just wrapped up this Spring on the new apartment.

Combs said the new apartment would not have been possible without the help of Foothills Community Church, which did the construction work, and others who donated to the effort.

“I thank God for them,” said Combs. “Then, there is a couple that lives in Florida. They are moving here on the lake and you cannot use two houses full of furniture. By the time we got through with the apartment, (the couple) gave us enough stuff to furnish that whole apartment. I just thank God for the blessing.

The new apartment adds to the Men’s Shelter, which currently houses four people, and a women’s shelter on Diagonal Street.

Combs said the goal is to not just provide a place to stay, but to help change lives and help people make a change in their lives.

She said she loves what she does and appreciates the community’s support.

“It just fills me with joy,” said Combs. “I really want the people to see what it is all about and see that we are real about what are doing. This is my life. I love what I do.”

Shirley’s Shelter is a non-profit, 501c3 organization that operate solely on donations.

People can make a donation at her restaurant on Currahee Street or at any First Citizens Bank.