Homeless Woman Worries That Reorganizing Shelter Will Leave Her Family On Street

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A woman living in a Chillicothe shelter said that she worries she and her three children may find themselves on the street again.

Life has dealt Jennifer Hutchinson some hard knocks before.

“Before I came here, “I lived in Huntington School District with my kids and my fiancé, and we had some life struggles,” Hutchinson said. “And he got addicted to pain pills.”

She said that the last few months have been a downward spiral.

“When he left, that was our only source of income, so everything kind of went downhill for me,” Hutchinson said.

When she and her three young children found themselves without a place to live, she said the Daughters of Ruth emergency shelter opened its doors. Hutchinson then got a job and has since been saving money.

“I work here in town, I also am about to start a new job,” Hutchinson said. “I’ll be making three dollars more on the hour.”

With things finally looking up, she said that she learned the shelter was reorganizing. She and her three children, as well as the other residents of the emergency shelter, would need to find a new place to stay by Oct. 15.

Dan DeGarmo with Daughters of Ruth said the shelter would remain open to clients for mentoring services during the reorganization, but cannot accept any new residents during that time.

“If you have a vehicle or an engine that needs worked on, you can’t really work on it, while it’s running, so we just have to shut it off, get inside, re-tool,” DeGarmo said.

Volunteers said that they would not leave anyone else out of the street.

In the year that it’s been open, Daughters of Ruth volunteers said that the shelter has helped 34 women and 39 children go from homeless to housed/.

Hutchinson said that she hoped to be one of the shelter’s success stories, but without more time to save, she said that she is worried about the future.

“I don’t know where I’m going to go,” Hutchinson said.

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