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WDAY: The News Leader

Published January 07, 2012, 06:27 PM

Grand Forks Homeless Shelter is Packed with People Seeking Shelter

Grand Forks, ND (WDAY TV) -- So many, it's way overcapacity. With all the overflow of homeless, it's making not only the budget, but space tight at the Northland Rescue Mission.

By: Melanie Orlins, WDAZ, WDAY

Grand Forks, ND (WDAY TV) -- So many, it's way overcapacity. With all the overflow of homeless, it's making not only the budget, but space tight at the Northland Rescue Mission.

Although we've had a mild winter--it hasn't made things easier at the Northland Rescue Mission. The shelter is housing at least 115 more people than it can hold.

Courtney/VOLUNTEER: "I've noticed a lot of things changing...last year we had the same number of volunteers came and maybe about half the residents so it's a big difference."

Melanie/KITCHEN MANAGER: "There is a lot more increase this year because of employment, it has a lot to do with employment."

People come to Grand Forks to find jobs, but end up here. Right now, 102 men call the Mission home-- 8 times the number of women.

Melanie: "We have people from all over the United States here."

Last night the Mission had a 5 person overflow meaning 5 people had to sleep on the floor of the dining room.

Melanie: "You know it is hard to see but at the same time, this happens all over so it just makes me feel good to know that I'm helping."

Kitchen Manager Melanie says besides helping folks get back on their feet, she's thankful for volunteers who keep this place running.

Adrian: "Here at the mission we cook, sometimes we do the 'store', we stock, rearrange, and serve."

Courtney: "People here love it so we get a lot of thank you's and stuff, smiles so it feels good."

Melanie: "Thank you so much for the meal, thank you for everything, so they are really good residents."

Even though the shelter is $30-thousand dollars shy of the 6-hundred thousand dollar goal, spirits are still high.

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