EVANGELINE PARISH — In Evangeline Parish, a woman is opening the doors to her business to help the homeless stay warm. The building is owned by Shalonda Tezeno and her family. Their plans was to use the building as an adult day care facility, for the elderly. Those plans were paused because of the pandemic.
With the building currently vacant, Tezeno saw an opportunity to help.
" I seen some homeless people sleeping in a trash bin," Tezeno said. "It was a lady and her son actually. Then at the corner I seen a lady and husband at the corner as well. So it broke my heart."
Using a bus intended for the daycare, Tezeno has been bringing people to the facility , who need a warm place to stay . She's offering more than place to sleep. Food, blankets, clothes and more are offered to help keep the people warm.
"I'm not looking for a thank you or pat on the back, it's just to make sure that they're safe and warm," Tezeno said.
It's giving hope to the people who are sheltering at the facility, including an Acadiana couple. They said they panicked when learning about the Winter Storm.
"We were sitting there trying to think about what we're going to do in our tent,"Linzie Hanley said. "Our tent had already flooded. Everything was soak and wet. It was freezing already. We were freaking out and kind of panicking."
She added, "Just out the blue she (Tezeno) just showed up and said 'hey come stay in my building it's empty. It's got heat and beds'. She showed up right on time. It was a blessing."
Tezeno and her family are looking into making the facility a homeless shelter to help people beyond this storm. Donations are being accepted if you'd like to help contact Tezeno at 337-831-8171
They are still accepting people if you need a place to stay, the facility is located at 1562 W. Main.