Homeless Shelters in Milledgeville


Katie Futch, News Editor

The winter is an especially difficult time for the homeless population in the community. The frigid temperatures heighten dangerous conditions, specifically a lack of warmth, food and shelter.

As of January 2022, the homeless population in Georgia reached approximately 10,500 people. While the state does provide several resources for the homeless, most organizations are in urban areas. In Atlanta, there are 25 homeless shelters. However, in more rural counties, such as Baldwin County, there are little to no homeless shelters.

In Milledgeville, the only organizations that provide shelter are The Salvation Army and the Maranatha Missions Home. However, these shelters are only for emergency use and do not provide long-term housing.

The Salvation Army does offer many services for the homeless population in Milledgeville. They provide rent and utility assistance, clothing, food assistance and disaster relief services.

Maranatha Missions Home gets the majority of its funding through the Maranatha Thrift Store. It is a 501-c-3 non-profit organization that resells gently used articles of clothing and furniture. The proceeds then benefit the shelter. It aims to assist homeless veterans in the area by providing temporary housing and financial assistance.

Another resource for the homeless in Milledgeville is Café Central. Café Central opened in 2009 and is a soup kitchen dedicated to feeding the needy in Milledgeville. This is the only place in Milledgeville that offers completely free meals. It is open every Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Café Central is a 501-c-3 non-profit organization and relies on monetary and food donations as well as volunteers. The volunteers are responsible for greeting guests, cooking, serving the food and cleaning each week.

While GC does not have a specific organization that focuses on helping the homeless community in Milledgeville, they do an annual event, the Potato Drop. This event partners with the GIVE Center as well as GC’s Office of Sustainability.

The event usually takes place on West Campus. Over 40,000 pounds of potatoes are dropped on campus, and volunteers help bag, process and load potatoes for community partners. It typically feeds 130,000 people in the local community.

The GC website said that the purpose of this event is to “help educate participants about hunger and the amount of perfectly edible food that goes to waste in America.”

Last year, over 250 volunteers donated their time to help organize the potatoes into 10-pound bags that were distributed to the greater Milledgeville community. The event typically takes place in November. If you are interested in volunteering at Café Central, contact the Freedom Church Office.