Cumberland County is partnering with a Fayetteville church to give people experiencing homeless a safe place to stay in below freezing temperatures. The development comes as the board of commissioners voted on Monday night to ban campsites on county property-a move pushing people off the street.
Cumberland County's board of commissioners voted to enter a partnership with True Vine Ministries Monday night to sponsor the white flag shelter. The board says this is the county's way of providing immediate support to those living on the street and are in danger of the cold. This is especially true for those who have been staying on county-owned property and could get pushed off because of the new ordinance banning camp sites.
"We look at the people who come into our facility as our guests," said True Vine Ministries Pastor Ernest Jones. "We want to show them love. We want to let them know that, there are people here that are concerned about you."
If reported for staying on county property, people can ultimately be cited and forced to move. That's why leadership at True Vine and the county board are encouraging people to take advantage of the beds, free meals, showers and counseling services at the church's gym on Morganton Road.
"We don't want to lose one life to inclement weather. I am hoping that not one citation is given because of inclement weather," said Cumberland County Board Of Commissioners Chairwoman Dr. Toni Stewart. "Please take advantage of the resources that the county has offered."
The county says it is partnering with True Vine to provide the white shelter until the end of March 2023. However, organizers are prepared to revisit the agreement and extend sheltering services if there continues to be freezing temperatures.