– Served more than 1,510 people
– Served more than 170,000 meals
– 67 families left One80 Place with homes of their own
– 138 guests gained employment
– Provided healthcare to 526 guests and 2,334 medical visits
– Provided legal services to 582 people with 780 legal issues

The Encampment/"Tent City"

Who owns the property where the encampment is located?
This particular encampment is located on land owned by the Department of Transportation.

Is it illegal to live on Department of Transportation property?
Yes. While it is not illegal to be on Department of Transportation property, it is illegal to pitch a tent and stay on the property for longer than 48 hours.

Has there been a large increase in homelessness in our community?
During the last week of January and first week of February, our community will conduct our annual homeless count. At this time, outreach workers will interview every person living in the encampment. A by-name list will be established. We believe that many of those living in the encampment have moved from other encampments either on the peninsula or from other areas. Once the homeless count is conducted, the Lowcountry Homeless Coalition will issue a report on the status of homelessness in our community.

I take food and supplies to the encampment; is this best way to help people living there?
Individuals living unsheltered face many hardships and often the longer someone lives unsheltered, the harder it is to break that cycle. Providing food, clothing and supplies to people in need shows compassion for our fellow man; however, these efforts can sometimes become toxic to the very people we are trying to help. We should ask ourselves if what we are doing is helping someone continue to be homeless or are we helping them end their homelessness?

How can I help?
One80 Place focuses its efforts on providing rapid re-housing services along with other supportive services to people experiencing homelessness.  Supporting One80 Place through financial contributions as well as donations of food and supplies is the best way to help end someone’s homelessness. Being an advocate for the issue of homelessness, affordable housing and higher paying jobs is also a great way to help.

What is One80 Place doing about the encampment?
The homeless encampment is a community problem. Lack of oversight by Department of Transportation, lack of affordable housing and low-wage jobs are all contributing factors. Every night, One80 Place shelters up to 150 men, women and children. In 2015, we provided shelter and services to over 1,600 homeless individuals in our community and prevented and ended homelessness for 960 individuals and families. Without additional resources to provide ongoing housing subsidies to those living in the encampment, One80 Place must prioritize those who seek our services and honor the wishes of our donor community by focusing on individuals living at One80 Place.

Are One80 Place shelters full?
On some nights, One80 Place is full. Typically, though, there are 3-5 beds available (about 2-3%).

How long do people live in the shelter?
People can stay as long as they need to, as long as they are working on their personal plan to return to permanent housing. Our average length of stay is 46 days.

Why do people become homeless?

The challenges faced by people that are homeless are complex and multi-faceted. People become homeless for a myriad of reasons including financial problems, mental health issues, substance abuse, domestic abuse, physical health problems, or a combination of any of these factors. A common thread among homeless people is having no support system on which to rely. Most often people try to get help from their friends or family but when they have exhausted these resources, they come to the shelter.

What is the history behind the shelter?

During the winter of 1984, concerned citizens noticed more people than ever were seeking shelter in public buildings. A group of business and civic leaders, religious leaders, and Charleston Mayor Joseph P. Riley, Jr. joined forces, determined to bring together the community’s resources to ensure everyone in need had a safe place to sleep. From that effort, Charleston Interfaith Crisis Assistance Ministry, now One80 Place, was born. What began as a warm meal and a volunteer-staffed shelter has evolved into a comprehensive service agency dedicated to helping families and individuals end their homelessness and turn their lives around.

Where does One80 Place get its funding?

One80 Place receives 40% of its funding from community support and the other 60% from federal, state, and city grants.

How many men, women, and children stay at the shelter?

While the number of guests varies from night to night, One80 Place provides shelter to about 160 men, women and children nightly. Nightly capacity includes:
Men’s Shelter, including Veterans: 110
Family Center, Charleston: 45 women and children
The number of children in the shelter changes often, one week there might be 10 children and the next week there might be none.

What services do you provide for the guests?

One80 Place provides a variety of services for homeless people in our community. Not only does the shelter offer meals and a place to sleep, we provide comprehensive programs for our guests to help stop the cycle of homelessness and promote self-sufficiency. Every client is assigned a case manager, who provides essential guidance in identifying barriers to success and assists in the development of a self-sufficiency plan. While at One80 Place, guests have access to employment and educational services at the HELP center, primary health care at the Homeless Health Clinic, Veterans’ services, various life skills groups taught by trained counselors, a legal clinic for civil legal matters, housing assistance and more.

Additional Resources

If you’re interested in learning more about homelessness in the United States, you will find plenty of information on the following websites.

National Healthcare for the Homeless Council
National Coalition for the Homeless: A great site for basic information and data
National Alliance to End Homelessness: Facts and advocacy information
American Bar Association Commission on Homelessness and Poverty: Information about legal action to help the very poor
National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty: Describes legal efforts to end homelessness