A water well failure at Bastrop County’s only soup kitchen and homeless shelter has forced the closure of the facility and the relocation of its needy families.
Pastor Roland Nava, who runs In the Streets Hand Up High Ministry, the nonprofit that operates the shelter and soup kitchen along Texas 95 north of Bastrop, is now asking for donations to fix the well.
The shelter discovered the well failure Aug. 29 and spent the day finding new arrangements for the four families living in the facility’s housing units. Without running water, Nava said, the shelter is unable to provide showers, drinking water or restrooms. The issue has also forced the closure of the soup kitchen, which has had to turn away 75 to 100 people daily.
“We can’t wash dishes or anything,” Nava said. “This whole property is run on that one well.”
A water well service technician last week found that the issue stemmed from an electrical failure in the well’s water tank, which will require a replacement of the entire water tank, Nava said.
The well service company estimated the total cost for repairs are $5,500. Nava is making an appeal to the public for further help.
It is unclear when the soup kitchen and shelter will reopen.
The well failure comes at a time when the ministry is struggling to raise money for an emergency shelter. Last month, donations for the construction project came to a standstill as the facility neared completion. The emergency shelter’s foundation has been poured, the walls and roofs are bolted into place, and electricians have wired the warehouse-style building. Now, only $15,000 stands between the incomplete building and a full build out, with restrooms, family rooms and a driveway, Nava said.
As planned, the private emergency shelter would be able to house between 40 to 50 people during a natural disaster. It would be the next addition to the ministry’s plethora of offerings since it relocated from Bastrop to its site at 987 N. Texas 95, near Camp Swift, over two years ago.
The ministry also operates a small shelter for people experiencing chronic homelessness and several small homes for parents and children during times of personal crisis.
Each of the shelter’s facilities are funded by donations. Anyone interested in donating can do so through the ministry’s website at www.itshuh-ministry.org.