City officials say Rapid Shelter Columbia at full capacity

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO) —City of Columbia officials say Rapid Shelter Columbia, the campus for people experiencing homelessness, is now at 100% capacity.

Rapid Shelter Columbia has been in full operation since November 1st, 2022.

The campus on Calhoun Street is equipped with 50 individual pallet units for people experiencing homelessness.

Residents are provided with physical and mental health services, alcohol and drug abuse counseling, and other services.

City Manager Teresa Wilson says Rapid Shelter Columbia residents enjoy having their own personal space.

“A space where they can get case management, and wrap around services, different agencies coming to them, assisting them with getting on their feet, and looking for a steady income stream, a job. Having what people take for granted in daily needs met,” Wilson says.

Director of Homeless Services for the City of Columbia, Kameisha Heppard, says she and her team help residents meet their goals by catering the services offered to each individual.

“Some clients are ready at the moment they become an active participant and others are not, so it’s just different responses being able to change up the communication style in order to get their engagement,” Heppard says.

Wilson and Heppard say one client has already found a permanent home through a community partner but they’re looking for additional permanent housing partners, and other partners for the campus as well.

“So we welcome any community agency that has not made contact with us, to come out, do a tour, and let’s sit down and talk about how we can get a partnership going,” says Heppard.

Along with around the clock security, the campus includes the Rapid Shelter Overflow building — providing a safe place for people during extreme or cold weather.

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