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Open Door Women's Shelter Expands to Meet Community Needs


The Open Door Women’s Shelter, a vital project of the Open Door Community Center, is thrilled to announce a significant milestone in its mission to support women and children experiencing homelessness. On June 20, 2024, the shelter secured critical funding from the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency to support an ambitious expansion project. This funding will cover up to 70 percent of the project costs, not exceeding $696,000, with additional grants and community support needed to complete the funding requirements.

Expanding Capacity to Serve More Families

This expansion is more than just a structural enhancement; it is a lifeline for many in the community. The project includes the construction of a 3,000 square foot addition to the existing shelter. Once completed, the shelter's capacity will increase from 9 to 24 beds, significantly enhancing its ability to provide safe, temporary shelter for women and their children.

The new space will feature:

  • Two additional family rooms

  • A seven-bed dormitory

  • A large kitchen designed to serve two families simultaneously

  • Two bathrooms

  • A laundry room

  • A small office

  • A Multipurpose Room for private meetings, job and housing searches, and children’s activities

Addressing an Urgent Need

Laurie Stewart, Executive Director of Open Door Women’s Shelter, emphasizes the critical need for this expansion: “Since the beginning of 2024, we have received 95 calls for shelter from across the region. Unfortunately, we had to turn away 44 women and 51 children due to lack of capacity, referring them to other organizations for assistance.”

The expansion will allow the shelter to better serve the Northeastern NC region, which has a population of 500,000. This project underscores the shelter’s commitment to making a meaningful impact on the community by providing essential resources and support to those in need.

A Community Effort

The success of this project is a testament to the confidence and support of the shelter's partners, investors, and stakeholders. “This funding is a testament to the confidence our investors and partners have in our vision and commitment to excellence,” said Stewart. The shelter extends its sincere gratitude to everyone who has contributed to this endeavor and looks forward to continuing this journey together.

How You Can Help

Open Door Women’s Shelter welcomes support from individuals, churches, organizations, and businesses. Donations, third-party fundraisers, and in-kind donations of services and supplies are all valuable contributions that will help make this expansion a reality.

For more information or to get involved, please contact Laurie Stewart at 252-833-8514 or visit Together, we can make a lasting difference in the lives of women and children in our community.

About Open Door Women’s Shelter: 

Open Door Women’s Shelter is dedicated to providing safe temporary housing for women and their children experiencing homelessness. The shelter connects its residents with essential skills and community resources, enabling them to transition into long-term, stable housing.

For media inquiries, please contact: Laurie Stewart, Executive Director Open Door Women’s Shelter 252-833-8514

To learn more about Open Door Women's Shelter and how you can support our ongoing efforts, please visit our website at


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