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  • Sara Doan, Northeast Arkansas News

The HUB delays reopening date, cites a rise on covid-19 cases

JONESBORO, Ark- The HUB homeless resource center was supposed to reopen in full operations tomorrow, but that’s not happening anymore.

The HBU will continue to follow its covid protocols. Delaying, their reopening after months of planning thanks to coronavirus cases continuing to climb due to the delta variant.

“We spent hours trying to figure it out, but we just can’t find a way to do it in a healthy manner- have people come down to our office,” says HUB executive director Kim Chase.

The HUB homeless resource center is located along Union Street in Jonesboro.

Pre-covid, they offered classes and assistance to unsheltered members of the community.

But since April 2020, like many organizations, they had to adjust.

Chase says too many obstacles stood in the way to re-open right now.

“We don’t have the volunteer base anymore. A lot of them are concerned about coming back. I feel confident that all of them were vaccinated,” she says. “But the delta… strain there’s more concern about it.”

During the 2020 point in time homeless count, there were 600 unsheltered people in town.

Chase says this year it was determined there are 300 homeless children in just the Jonesboro Public Schools.

The HUB will continue to focus on feeding the homeless population every Tuesday and Thursday and work by appointment only.

Since providing lunches 15 months ago, they’ve fed over 2,000 unsheltered people.

They will add new components to help those in need.

“Our homeless population carry everything with them. And so, our locker program will be for guests of the HUB,” says Chase. “And they’ll have access on Tuesday and Thursdays when we’re doing our lunches. And they can store some of their belongings in their locker.”

Chase says they are also starting a mobile clothes washer for hub guests. They will receive two buckets, detergent, and a plunger-like object.

“You put your clothes in the bucket with the laundry detergent, agitate a little bit; take it out-put it in the clean water, agitate a little bit. That’s just going to be important if, for nothing else, self-esteem.

They’ll finally have clean clothes,” said Chase.

The HUB plans to monitor the number of new local and statewide covid-19 cases before announcing a re-opening date.


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