New hope on the horizon for Maury County’s only homeless shelter

Room in the Inn of Columbia was recently gifted a church. Renovations are underway and the goal is to have people staying there this Winter.
There is help on the horizon for Maury County's only homeless shelter.
Published: Sep. 23, 2023 at 10:10 PM CDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) -There is just one homeless shelter serving Maury County and several of the counties that surround it, and lately, they’ve been having to rely on a hotel to house people in need, but a better option is now on the horizon.

For seven years the Room in the Inn of Columbia has been helping people like Betty Long with things like housing, transportation, job placement and education.

“I don’t know what I’d do without it because I still depend on them a lot for help,” said Long.

But to do that, they’ve had to get really creative. In 2019, the fire marshal kicked the non-profit out of their church saying the old building wasn’t up to code and couldn’t be used to house people

“I was heartbroken, and I gathered the elders together, and we cried. It was like a death,” said Reverend Jeff Kane who runs the non-profit.

But Kane and his team remained determined. For the past several years they’ve provided housing at a hotel for veterans and moms and children who are escaping domestic violence. Right now, they’re renting six rooms, and we’re told the situation is adequate.

“It’s peace and quiet and a shower but it’s not the ideal that we think all people deserve in that situation,” said Kane.

Now, thanks to a generous donor, things are looking up. Recently they gifted a church to Room in the Inn of Columbia. Renovations are underway and the goal is to have people staying there this Winter.

“It’s in a rural setting so children can play. Moms can be at peace of mind. It’s got a kitchen and a room for meetings,” said Kane.

But even this won’t be their final stop. Ultimately, the goal is to get everyone out of the shelter and into real homes.

“Wouldn’t it be a nice Christmas or holiday coming home for families? And that’s our dream,” said Kane.

The Room in the Inn of Columbia is always in need of things like sofas, detergent, diapers and food.

Their annual Oktoberfest fundraising event is happening on Sept. 29. They’re going to have music, a wiener dog race, craft beer and food trucks. WSMV4′S Carley Gordon will be the emcee for the second year in a row. For tickets, visit 4th Annual Room in the Inn Oktoberfest Tickets, Fri, Sep 29, 2023 at 6:00 PM | Eventbrite