Urban Ministry Center

A homeless resident uses a flashlight in a tent at a homeless camp near uptown Charlotte.
David Boraks / WFAE

The number of people sleeping outdoors in Charlotte appears to be rising as shelter programs adjust services because of the coronavirus. These residents are following news about the pandemic, and with a bit of help, taking precautions.

The Men's Shelter of Charlotte/Urban Ministry Center currently has 180 beds at its Statesville Avenue location, which will be replaced.
Michael Falero / WFAE

People who work with homeless residents in Mecklenburg County say the coronavirus outbreak has prompted new precautions, including health screening for shelter guests. They’re working to reduce crowding at meal time and appealing for donations of food and other supplies.

The Men's Shelter of Charlotte/Urban Ministry Center currently has 180 beds at its Statesville Avenue location, which will be replaced.
Michael Falero / WFAE

A homeless nonprofit in Charlotte announced Thursday it expects to start construction soon on a new men’s shelter that will have more beds, privacy, and other services. The announcement follows a $500,000 donation made toward the project by Honeywell, which moved its headquarters to Charlotte in 2019.

Mark Rumsey/ WFAE

The longtime executive director of Charlotte’s Urban Ministry Center retires on Friday. Dale Mullennix has held the position since he helped start the homeless services agency 25 years ago.

Nick de la Canal / WFAE

Updated Sept. 15, 7:25 a.m.

Nonprofit organizations around Charlotte are looking for extra help as Hurricane Florence barrels toward the Carolina coast.

David Boraks / WFAE

An estimated 1,400 people are homeless in Charlotte and Mecklenburg County. Finding them is the biggest challenge for those who provide shelter and other services. That job falls to the outreach staff from the Urban Ministry Center -- a sort of emergency response team. WFAE's David Boraks rode along on Wednesday as they checked on homeless people uptown.

As frigid temperatures continue, local groups are making more space available to shelter the area’s homeless population.

Duncan McFadyen

A count of chronically homeless people in Charlotte this year turned up 516 people in need of help. For three days in January, a couple hundred volunteers fanned out to search streets, parks, shelters, hospitals, jails and homeless camps. Among the people they found was Al Gorman, living in a tent in Huntersville. Since then, the Urban Ministry Center has helped him find a place to live.

Gwendolyn Glenn

Charlotte’s Urban Ministry Center is heading a coalition that aims to raise nearly $12 million to house 450 chronically homeless people within two years. 

Kevin Granados

When we think of art exhibits, we certainly don’t think of Homeless outreach centers as venues, but that was the case last month the Urban Ministry Center in Charlotte.

The liveliness of the happy and colorful art on display is matched by the energy of visitors and artists as they roam the Hope is an Open Door exhibit.

“It’s an awesome thing. It’s awesome. I mean, real awesome,” says Annie Gurley.

There are sculptures, paintings, drawings – all the creations of artists who are or have been homeless.