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Nonprofit pitches housing pods to tackle homelessness in Berkeley County

A nonprofit organization pitched a plan to Berkeley County Council Monday designed to address homelessness in the area.
Published: Jan. 25, 2022 at 12:54 AM EST|Updated: Jan. 25, 2022 at 6:14 AM EST
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MONCKS CORNER, S.C. (WCSC) – A Moncks Corner nonprofit has pitched a new proposal to the Berkeley County council to build a special housing development to address the area’s homelessness problem.

Tory Liferidge, a pastor and executive director of Grace Impact Development Center, wants to turn land behind the Berkeley Community Mental Health Center on Stoney Landing Road, just off Highway 52, into housing for the homeless.

“We have the opportunity to secure five acres of land to create homeless shelter pods for transitional housing, safe housing, overnight housing,” Liferidge said.

During Tuesday night’s Berkeley County Council meeting, Liferidge shared a proposal to house upwards of 50 people experiencing homelessness.

He said he wants to partner with the county to set aside over $2.2 million to build the development, which would contain over 30 pods for individuals and families.

The development and money would be managed by Grace Impact Development Center, a non-profit that focuses on housing, health and workforce development issues.

“We know that we have federal dollars that are allocated for reasons such as this,” Liferidge said, “and so what can be done is that we can actually use those dollars to support this project and allow us to partner with the county.”

County Council member Caldwell Pinckney said affordable housing and providing shelter for the homeless is a need in the area.

“I know some folks that at night they’re under the bridge looking for shelter,” he said.

He called Liferidge’s proposal a good start in the right direction to getting help to those in need.

“It’s really real,” Pinckney said. “Although we may not see any on an ongoing basis, but trust me, it’s really real and throughout Berkeley County, even in rural Berkeley County.”

If the project gets the go-ahead, Liferidge hopes it will become a model for similar projects throughout the county.

“Given that we are a non-profit, we also have an opportunity to reach out for more grant sources to come in and help us, not only fund this but to replicate it in other areas of the county,” Liferidge said. “We just need the opportunity to create the pilot.”

Tuesday was the first time this plan was brought to County Council.

Liferidge said a future phase of their plan would include affordable housing for the elderly and vulnerable populations.

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