CHAMPAIGN-URBANA, Ill. (WAND) - After several months of renovations, "C-U at Austin's Place" Women's Emergency Shelter will move into its new home on Friday.

For the past 13 years, Austin's Place has grown from a grassroots mission effort started by First United Methodist church into an essential community service that has benefited hundreds of vulnerable women.

"Any female that find themselves in need of a place to stay overnight can benefit from this shelter," said Rob Dalhaus III, executive director of C-U at Home.

The new "C-U at Austin's Place" facility has its own separate entrance at 504 N. Market Street in the C-U at Home facility. The new addition will be able to shelter up to 14 women.

"Now these women have a place to be safe, to be warm, and there are staff members that can talk to them," Dalhaus said. 

C-U at Home has been able to shelter men and women through the COVID-19 pandemic by making a year-round shelter available. Austin's Place is just another step in that direction to help women get off the street and onto a new way of living.

"It doesn't matter why John or Bridgett shows up at our door, what matters is we are there for them and we are there for them to grow and then help them with whatever their goals are," Dalhaus said. 

The construction of Austin's Place was able to be completed by the generosity of the community. For more information about C-U at Home and ways to help, click here.

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