Salvation Army completes renovations to House of Hope apartments

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — After two years of being closed, the Salvation Army has reopened its House of Hope transitional housing program.

The Salvation Army was forced to close the House of Hope apartment complex because of damages. For the last two years, they have been raising money to renovate.

“It’s a place where you can restart your life, sometimes we find ourselves in dark places,” Salvation Army Corps Officer Arnaldo Pena said. “That’s what we support, to give the hope to the families that need it.”

Salvation Army refurbished apartments for families in need

On Friday, they invited the community to see the apartments that have been remodeled.

“We already had one family that has been identified and as far as I know, they will be moved in the next week,” Pena said. “So in the next few weeks, our families will be calling on assets if they have faith for the program.”

House of Hope accepts families with children who are trying to overcome tough situations. One lady utilized the program in 2017 and shared her success story at Friday’s ribbon cutting.

“I went through a string of domestic violence relationships throughout my addiction, I was very brand new to recovery, and they took a chance on me by allowing me into the program and changing my life,” Melissa Warren said.

The program taught her how to budget, improve her credit score, and prepare to purchase her own home, which she did in 2019. She said none of that would have been possible without House of Hope and officials with the City of Panama City Community Development.

“So many times the stigmatism around addiction, homelessness, single parenting, and broken homes is so great from the outside looking in but as someone who has experienced all of those things myself, I know that really what we want is somewhere safe and somewhere that’s going to show us the way,” Warren said.

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Each apartment costs about $10,000 to remodel. The Salvation Army still has four left to complete.

Click here if you would like to donate.

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