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Daybreak Shelter Offers Basic Needs to Homeless | News

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Daybreak Shelter Offers Basic Needs to Homeless

Less than a year ago, the Daybreak Shelter first opened on Walnut Street to help downtown Macon's homeless and it's come a long way since.

This center is open during the day for the 300 to 500 people looking to fulfill basic needs like taking showers or doing laundry.

For Jewell Simmons, this place is home and these people are family.

"See I gained more family, a better family. And that one right here, don't you turn around Willy. This is my second family. It's better than my first family," says Simmons.

And she was eager to share her world, pointing out teachers and friends.

The 44-year-old found out about the Daybreak Shelter through a friend but credits assistant director Denise Saturna for turning her life around.

"Everyone who comes to the center is either living homeless or living in poverty in our city. We don't separate out who is who. We just take the people as they walk through the door and see them as a person," says Saturna.

"My family, they were no where around for me, but Denise, she was there," says Simmons.

Sister Elizabeth Greim partnered with DePaul USA, a Philadelphia non-profit, to raise $175,000 to finance the shelter. The donation-based center runs mostly on volunteers.

"They're going to help me out with my GED. they can come in here and get your clothes washed, stuff like that. You've got a place for kids, doctors and all," says Simmons.

Andrew Malcolm once lived in the streets and like Simmons considers this shelter as a safe haven.

The 59-year-old uses art as therapy, often stopping at Daybreak to draw and to encourage old friends.

"There's life outside of being homeless, there's life beyond this," he says.

The grand opening of the shelter is this Thursday.

It is located at 174 Walnut Street, just south of Martin Luther King Boulevard near downtown Macon.


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