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Construction On Wichita Children's Home Entering Final Phase


The Wichita Children’s Home will be moving to its new location in February. KMUW’s Deborah Shaar has an update on the project.

Construction on the two-story building is entering its last phase. The new home is being built on 13 acres on East 37th Street near Rock Road.

The Children’s Home is a shelter for homeless, abused and neglected children under the age of 16. It has been located on Holyoke for the past 50 years.

Children’s Home CEO Debbie Kennedy says the shelter is nearly complete but there’s still work to be done on a new area.

"We were able to raise some money for our human trafficking unit, and so that’s currently being built and that won’t be done until the end of February," Kennedy says. "So we will be moving in in February."

The new building costs $12.5 million. Kennedy says they have about $1 million left to raise.

The location includes apartments for kids who have aged out of foster care or are homeless. Kennedy says the new building will have a family atmosphere and will feature murals and bright painting.

The new shelter will accommodate about 56 kids. Kennedy says on an average day the home cares for about 85 to 93 kids. There will be 14 units that include a bedroom, living area and small kitchen. The human trafficking area will have four bedrooms.

Kennedy expects the gymnasium to be complete by April. There’s also a community garden in the green space.

The current building has one main entrance. Kennedy says the new shelter will feature a separate, private entrance for law enforcement agencies.

Planning for the new building began in 2012.

A community open house is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 19 and Sunday, December 20 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at 7271 East 37th Street North, between Woodlawn and Rock roads.


Follow Deborah Shaar on Twitter @deborahshaar.

To contact KMUW News or to send in a news tip, reach us at news@kmuw.org.