Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Hundreds will have no place to sleep after Spokane's 24-7 homeless shelter runs out of money

Posted By on Tue, Apr 11, 2017 at 11:16 AM

click to enlarge Hundreds will have no place to sleep after Spokane's 24-7 homeless shelter runs out of money
Time is running out on the House of Charity.

A round-the-clock shelter for people who are homeless in the area will end in less than a month.

By May 1, the House of Charity shelter will run out of money to provide a safe place to sleep for hundreds of men and women.

"Well over 200 homeless men and women who have been getting 24/7 sheltering will be forced to return to the streets of the City, the County and Spokane Valley," according to a news release from Catholic Charities, the nonprofit that runs HOC.

In January 2017, House of Charity expanded its overnight sleeping capacity to women, couples who didn't want to separate and animals (they historically only housed adult men). The extra capacity was bolstered by a surge of funds from the city of Spokane, Downtown Spokane Partnership and other businesses that donated money to fill the shelter's budget gap. But that money has run out.

Currently, there is no clear sense for how many hours per day House of Charity will be open,
or how and when the shelter will provide daily meals.

The shelter will continue providing overnight beds for 109 adult men.

Despite the setback, Catholic Charities is working toward building low-income apartments in the area. Three 50-unit buildings have gone up recently, and two more are under construction. Funds for those projects are still secured, Catholic Charities says in a statement.

"Without 24/7 sheltering, it is much more difficult to prepare our homeless population for the apartments that we are building for them," the news release reads. "There is also a profound financial, quality of life and human dignity cost to the region as we lose this resource."

More information will be available during a news conference scheduled for Thursday, April 13, at 11 am.

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Mitch Ryals

Mitch covers cops, crime and courts for the Inlander. He moved to Spokane in 2015 from his hometown of St. Louis, and is a graduate of the University of Missouri. He likes bikes, beer and baseball. And coffee. He dislikes lemon candy, close-mindedness and liars. And temperatures below 40 degrees.