CARTERSVILLE, GA (WGCL) — The Bartow County Health Department had no choice but to close a Budgetel Inn motel in Cartersville.
“A lot of families here don’t have anywhere to go,” said James Lewis, who was living at the extended stay motel.
The hospitality community, school district, religious groups, and government agencies all offered aid to destitute families renting from that motel.
Children and families are resting more comfortably now after being forced out of their extended stay motel with less than 24-hours’ notice.
The entire community stepped up to help and support about 200 people who became homeless without any warning, but what started out as chaos at the Budgetel Inn soon turned into an outpouring of support from the Cartersville community.
The Bartow County Health Department came in for a routine inspection on Tuesday and everyone had to be out by Wednesday at noon.
“The families had been our priority that we’re actually working on right now,” Abercrombie added.
Hotels and churches are helping displaced families until they can find other permanent places to live.
“Churches are here …everybody’s been pitching in,” said Richard Hollingsworth who was living at the extended stay motel.
There were moving trucks, packing and moving supplies, transportation, food and water.
Bartow county schools, hotels, and several other community groups coordinated bus transportation for dozens of school-aged children now living temporarily in other areas so they can get to their current school.
Restaurants and food pantries are providing meals and other necessities.
“Just warms my heart to see all the people who are coming together, and how fast they were able to organize all this,” said Lauren Taylor, who was living at the extended stay motel.
Families who were left panicking at first say they’re so thankful for the community support, because they’re doing the best they can.
The Health Department had been working with the owner of the Budgetel Inn for about a year now…but changes were never made.
All of the families have been taken care of for now, and the Health Department is meeting with the Budgetel Inn owner next week to work on steps to get the motel permit reinstated.
Those wishing to show their support for the displaced can make donations of restaurant or fast food gift cards at the Good Neighbor Homeless Shelter, 110 Porter Street, Cartersville.
Monetary donations are also being accepted for extended care and housing needs; online at GoodNeighborShelter.org or by check to PO Box 664 Cartersville, GA 30120.
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