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      Iron Mountain agency provides motel vouchers for those in need of shelter

      There was a time when "Jack Frost nipping at your nose" was a pleasant thought, but now, due to record temperatures, it isn't anymore.

      While many of us have our warm houses and apartments to go at night, others don't, and it's why some in the Iron Mountain community are getting involved.

      â??We've been participating in the Homeless Shelter program, both through the Salvation Army, the Caring House, and now with Child and Family Services of the U.P., so we've been doing that now for three or four years,â?? said John Gaudette, owner of Woodlands Motel in Iron Mountain.

      Gaudette owns and operates the Woodlands Motel where he partners with Child and Family Services in Iron Mountain to provide motel accommodations for those in need.

      â??When we set them up at the motel, the hope is that we're going to find them a place to go into afterwards,â?? said Lucas Hurzeler, housing coordinator. â??If they find something that qualifies, then we can do first month's rent as security deposit and up to three months rent if it's required.â??

      Child and Family Services, known in Iron Mountain as the Housing Assessment and Resources Agency, or HARA, provides a motel voucher through a grant; itâ??s a program that could be lifesaving in this weather.

      Applicants for the voucher do not need to show any form of income guideline proof, but the agency does ask that the recipient be in genuine need of shelter.

      â??Itâ??s kind of a last resort for us because we try to spread out the funding as much as we can,â?? Hurzeler said. â??If they come and tell us that's the case, then we fill out some quick paperwork with them and see if there is any room for them at the hotel.â??

      â??We enjoy the aspect of being able to give back to the community,â?? Gaudette said. â??Weâ??ve been in town here now over 30 years and we've always tried to have a charitable component of our business, just like we do our personal lives.â??

      To contact the Housing Assessment and Resources Agency, you can reach them at (906) 282-9045 or email them at: or