SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Great Circle, a behavioral health nonprofit that operates an emergency children’s shelter in Springfield, has expanded its services with the help of a state-funded contract that focuses on helping families.
The shelter can now temporarily house children whose families are experiencing a short-term crisis, according to the Great Circle press release.
The shelter is located at 1212 W. Lombard St. in Springfield.
“A family’s situation can change in the blink of an eye,” said Holly Hunt, the director of Great Circle’s Ozark Family Resource Center in Springfield. “If parents are hospitalized, the furnace goes out in the middle of winter or suddenly the family has no place to live, it’s very important to have a safe place for the children to stay. We can meet that need.”
The shelter can house up to 20 children at once. These children can remain at the shelter for up to 30 days while long-term placement is found, or the crisis is resolved, according to the release.
“Often, parents worry that an emergency will trigger other bad outcomes, including the state taking away their children because they are unable to care for them,” Hunt said. “In fact, the point of crisis care is to avoid that outcome. While we provide shelter for their children, parents will receive additional support to help them resolve the crisis and keep the family intact.”