Dubuque Rescue Mission planning new transitional complex - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Dubuque Rescue Mission planning new transitional complex


DUBUQUE (KWWL) -- A proposed transitional complex in Dubuque could help homeless men get back on their feet. Last month, the Dubuque Rescue Mission Board of Directors approved the purchase of property at 25th and Elm Streets in Dubuque. They plan to build a residence where men from The Mission can transition into long-term housing with supportive services. It's a service the mission hasn't been able to offer but they hope will make a difference change the turnover of homeless men in Dubuque.

"It's not real big it's not real small," 54 year old Dave McDonough said as he showed off his room at Dubuque's Rescue Mission.

"I was 22 years old when I won Mr. Iowa," McDonough added.

He used to be a personal trainer but life took a turn more than 14 years ago.

"I was a care taker for my mother and father for 14 years. I could only work part-time," McDonough said.

Then when he least expected it, he was out of money and had no place to live. Until he found the mission in downtown Dubuque.

"This is not your everyday mission. We have a lot of rules and regulations that we put on the men here," resident manager Mike Pendleton said

McDonough is one of 22 men currently staying at The Mission. He's been here for almost six months and is looking for work.

"I wanna get back on my feet," McDonough said.

But six months is the maximum time most men can stay here. Which is why the board of directors voted to purchase property at 25th and Elm Streets, in hopes to open a transitional housing complex.

"This is for the guys that, most of them Dubuquer's, who have fallen on all tough times. Want to get themselves back on their feet, get a job, get reunited with their families. And have housing that is secure, safe and lasting," Executive Director Rick Mihm.

Neighbors have all been notified of the possible complex, though some wouldn't go on camera, several admit they are worried about who will be living here. But Mihm says this transitional complex isn't for everyone. Residents would be required to have a full time job, and pay $200 rent each month.

"These would be the men that are really wanting to grasp an opportunity to succeed and to move forward with their lives," Mihm said.

Lives like McDonough's, that took a turn for the worst. And needed a little help to turn back around.

The board is in the middle of rezoning the property. Once that is complete they will begin raising money to build a new facility.

They also sent letters to all the neighbors who live around the proposed complex. A public information meeting is set for March 30th at 7:00 p.m.

Online Reporter: Lauren Squires

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