New veterans shelter opens in Lexington

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Posted at 5:08 PM, Nov 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-10 17:54:45-05

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — There is a new option for veterans experiencing homelessness in Lexington.

According to federal statistics, about 4,000 Kentuckians experienced homelessness as of January 2020. Around 400 of them were veterans.

"It is our joy to give service to these men who have served," said Ginny Ramsey with the Catholic Action Center. "We feel like it takes a little special TLC and that's what we're here for."

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Ramsey says this new shelter, Mother Teresa's in Lexington, has been five years in the making.

"We always have geared toward serving 20 veterans specifically," she said.

Veterans advocate, Heather French Henry, was part of the dedication ceremony on Wednesday. She says this is a beneficial addition to the area.

"You're able to bring together services that are just veteran-specific," she said. "So once a person identifies as a veteran if they're homeless, it opens up an entire array, a new avenue, a new silo of opportunities."

She says some of those services will be through the VA and Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs. The shelter opened on Sept. 30, but Ramsey says it already feels like home to some.

"Some of them who have moved in said, 'I don't know if I'm going to like this,"' Ramsey said. "Two days later they're saying, 'Ginny, I really like this. This is nice.' It's nice to have this space and to be part of this, as we call it, our family."

Ramsey says there are about 10 people living at the shelter now, but expects that to grow.