New Directions limiting operation hours, looking for new director

By Blake Schnitker on January 25 at 6:46am

A local homeless shelter is being forced to limit its hours of operation due to financial constraints, and now, it could be looking for a new director.

New Directions Warming and Cooling Center is announcing that, starting February 1st, the shelter will be open daily from 6 p.m. to 8 a.m., with accommodations to be made in the case of extreme weather temperatures.

It was reported last month that the local shelter was experiencing monetary constraints, and that without more donations, could be forced to shorten its hours of operation.

In light of these changes in operation hours, New Directions Executive Director Vanessa Tyus offered her verbal resignation within 30 days if 24-hour service wasn’t reinstated, according to the Jacksonville Journal Courier. On Tuesday, the New Directions board accepted Tyus’ resignation, effective immediately.

New Directions initially opened on February 2nd, 2010, and had operation hours from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. The local shelter expanded its hours of operation to provide 24/7 services three years ago.

In a press release from the shelter, it states that the “ongoing goal is to continue to meet the needs of the homeless in our community. New Directions functions solely on donations from the community, as it does not receive state or federal funding.