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Shelter home unveils newly rennovated facility

A little cold out, but the atmosphere was warm.
A little cold out, but the atmosphere was warm.(WLUC)
Published: Apr. 19, 2021 at 7:19 PM EDT
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HOUGHTON COUNTY, Mich. (WLUC) - After 71 days of renovations, the Barbara Kettle Gundlach Shelter Home held a ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrating the move to a new facility.

It’s just incredible to see a big open building turn into this,” said Mary Niemela, Shelter Director.

The shelter used to be in a large home in Calumet kept private for the safety of its tenants.

The new facility has been used for a variety of services over the years, but now it serves a new purpose.

It will now be a safe haven for survivors of domestic abuse.

“We built bedrooms, offices, which I’m sitting in right now,” said Niemela. “My first office in 30 years.”

Niemela said the building is great but that isn’t what the day was about.

“The important part is the people we provide a service for, and those are victims of domestic violence,” said Niemela.

The new location is smaller in terms of square feet but has larger communal living spaces.

This will be crucial for residents and will improve counseling service settings.

Niemela said additionally, the move left the shelter with lots of household items that they put into storage. However, they won’t go to waste.

“There’s times we’ll need it,” explained Niemela. “We certainly provide [and help] set up households [for victims] if we have extra stuff.”

Niemela reminded TV6 that the shelter home phone number will be disconnected temporarily during the move.

But, if anyone was to need assistance, they should call 911 and they will connect callers to the right place.

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