Amarillo's homeless relocated from Tent City

Updated: Nov. 9, 2017 at 6:10 PM CST
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AMARILLO, TX (KFDA/RNN) - Very little was left of Tent City as City of Amarillo officials and police were cleaning out the largely abandoned industrial area after they say the land owner decided to no longer allow the homeless to reside there.

"Our officers went out and they stood by pretty much to provide security while the people were moving and removing their property off this land," said Corporal Jeb Hilton.

One local citizen stepped up to provide Tent City residents a new safe place to live.

"We acquired the land from the home owner. He has said that we can stay here. We have his permission. We're leasing it right now," said Founder of Christ Church: Camp of New Beginnings Amanda Hunter

Hunter has been helping move property since Saturday to the new land called Christ Church: Camp of New Beginnings.

"They're not asking for a hand out, they're asking for a hand up, said Hunter. "If you don't give them a chance, they can't prove you wrong."

The homeless said they're grateful for the new camp because it has given them something they've lacked.

"That's what it's all about. Having a fresh start. She's gave me hope where I had no hope before," said Bill Kessel, a former Tent City resident who now calls Christ Church home.

"She gave me a good permanent try right here. Something I can fight for," said Terry Harper, who also moved from Tent City to Christ Church.

For those who call Christ Church home, there's camp rules of no drugs, alcohol or fights.

"Give everybody a chance, but if they break the rules, if they are doing anything that could hamper this ministry they know from the get-go you have to leave," said Hunter.

"I don't want to follow the rules. Hell no, I hate it more than anybody, but in order to make this work, I'm going to have too.  And I will," said Harper.

Hunter says the goal is to keep Christ Church as a safe haven for everyone.

"Rebuilding who they are on the inside, rebuilding their self worth. They felt like trash for so long. It's time to make them feel like a person and whenever they do, they'll want better for themselves," said Hunter.

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