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New 'homeless sanctuary' to open in 53206 ZIP code

A vacant warehouse in the 53206 ZIP code will see new life when it reopens as a 5-story resource center and day shelter for the homeless community later this year.

The MacCannon Brown Homeless Sanctuary announced last month it acquired a 35-thousand square foot building at 24th & Center St.




Plans for the space include a multi-faceted food program, a free community health clinic, a job resource center and plenty of additional space for community forums and activities.

Executive Director MacCannon Brown says the organization plans to renovate the building space one floor at a time, as funds allow.

"It's a faith thing," referencing the additional $25,000 needed to begin construction.  "And we believe in what we're doing."

Brown says she'll submit final plans to the City of Milwaukee for approval later this month.  If accepted, the organization could begin interior renovation in April.

Healthy food

A major part of the MBHS mission will focus on fresh food.  An on-site hydroponics ecosystem will grow fresh produce and fish, as will rooftop and table top gardens.

The harvest will flow directly into a commercial kitchen where meals will be served "waiter and waitress style" to guests, Brown says.

Brown has nearly 25 years of experience working with the Milwaukee Homeless Community, most recently as executive director of Repairers of the Breach.

Click the player below for an audio tour of the new building and to hear our interview.

Director of Digital Content | Radio Milwaukee