The Day Shelter is a safe haven for the most fragile and chronically homeless, disproportionately serving those with mental illness and/or physical disabilities. It provides many of the basic life necessities that we take for granted when we have a home of our own: access to bathrooms, showers, toiletries and clean clothing; phone and mail service; assistance obtaining photo identification; case management; on-site medical treatment; connection and transportation to day labor opportunities; and referral to needed community resources such as mental health counseling, substance abuse treatment, and transitional or permanent supportive housing.
Because it is a low-demand drop-in center, the Day Shelter succeeds in drawing into services even the most severely mentally ill who are not willing, because of their fragile psychological state, to consider coming into shelter overnight. Building trust with these individuals over time through small but positive interactions results in their eventual willingness to access additional needed services, toward helping them regain stability.
Opened in October 2005, the Night Shelter provides 118 emergency beds for homeless men, women, and families with children every night, year round. While the reasons for their becoming homeless vary, many are working individuals unable to afford housing in this area. Our goal: to provide the intensive support needed to shorten the length of their crisis and expedite their return to housing.
After check-in, overnight guests are provided a dinner meal, on-site educational opportunities, and case management, including setting and working toward a plan for becoming housed again. Volunteers— including families, congregations, and individuals—assist with check-in and shelter monitoring, as well as preparation and service of the dinner meal.