Williamsburg's Homeless & Indigent

P.O. Box 366, Lightfoot, VA 23090
Office: 757-561-3255
"Assisting people in re-gaining hope and a better way of life."

Wednesday, June 18, 2003

Monday's meeting was very exciting and a longer turnout than before. Mr. Favret was available to help answer questions in regards to the process that will hopefully lead to the signing of a lease on Building 27 at Eastern State Hospital. But, unfortunately, before we can get to the signing of a lease, by requirements, they have to offer the building to all other NPO's here and if everyone turns it down, we can proceed. So, now everyone knows who it was I approached about a building, Eastern State Hospital. We have their support for our ministry. The next step is to talk with John Horne regarding zoning., which I did today. He asked if I could call around to other new shelters in Virginia to see how they are zoned, because our zoning doesn't have any codes that cover a homeless shelter in James City County. And to contact him back when I can give him some contacts he can speak with. So we are moving closer. It may end up that we have to have a public hearing for re-zone.


John Favret
Hospital Director
4601 Ironbound Road
Williamsburg, VA 23187

Dear Mr. Favret:
As all of Williamsburg knows, in the past, there have been several attempts to establish a homeless
shelter within our community. All attempts have failed due to improper zoning and “not in my backyard”
attitude. In our efforts to help to the homeless in Williamsburg, it has become obvious that a shelter is a vital
necessity. This would provide a solution to many of the obstacles they face while trying to become
productive members of the community again.
After hearing the stories of others’ attempts and failures, logic had to prevail: so we looked at the
variety of motels that were for sale. But God had a different plan for the homeless and kept leading me back
to Eastern State Hospital. With the idea of requesting an empty building on the State’s property, I attended
the public meeting in April, 2003. As you may recall, during this meeting, I approached you about my
request and, yes, was highly laughed at. At the end of the meeting, even a former patient, who now works
part-time at ESH, acknowledged in her speech that a homeless shelter is needed in Williamsburg, with the
final remark, “Give her a building, Eastern State!”
The following week, Mr. Marty Kline offered me a tour of ESH and specifically Building 27. From the
moment I entered the building, I knew it is where God intends the shelter to be located. Logically, it is the
only area in Williamsburg that would meet the criteria for our vision of a shelter, would bypass the
“out-of-sight, out-of-mind” mentality toward the homeless, and be readily re-zoned. We have completed our
501(c)3 status and are now ready to move forward with our plans. Therefore, I come once again to request
the use of Building 27 for our homeless refuge. Considering the massive upgrades for the Life and Safety
Codes and the repairs that are needed, we request that ESH implement the procedures necessary for
approval so we can start renovations.
I have included our background of who we are, our mission statement, and our proposed ministry
program for the shelter on the additional pages that follow. Thank you for making this incredible offer to us,
your efforts in supporting our ministry, and the efforts you at ESH continually make to help others in need.

Patti McKenzie
cc: Mr. Marty Kline


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