Winter shelter program offers day service

first_imgVancouver’s homegrown response to overnight winter-weather homelessness will try warming up some daytimes, too.Winter Hospitality Overflow and other homeless shelters offer help for homeless people.o Call 360-695-9677 for help.o The Winter Hospitality Overflow program runs November through March.o On the Web: Visit the websites of the Council for the Homeless or Winter Hospitality OverflowFor the past decade, the Winter Hospitality Overflow — known as the WHO — has marshaled thousands of volunteers at two local Lutheran church sites, St. Andrew and St. Paul, to house homeless people who can’t squeeze into regular shelters as the weather goes bad. St. Andrew, in Orchards, is open to families, couples and single women while St. Paul, in downtown Vancouver, is open only to single men. The WHO season has been Nov. 1 through March 31 every year since 2003.All that time, WHO clients have packed up and been sent on their way every morning. Sister agency Share Vancouver offers a daytime homeless outreach program that features showers, laundry, mailboxes and other services at its downtown Share House, but the overall size and scope of that program have shrunk since budget cuts hit it in 2010. Also, Share House is a few blocks from St. Paul, but a good eight miles from St. Andrew.o What: “Night of Song and Praise,” fundraiser for the Winter Hospitality Overflow.o When: 7 p.m. Nov. 8.o Where: St. John’s Catholic Church, 8701 N.E. 119th St.o Tickets: Free, but a collection for the WHO will be taken.o Performing: Local praise groups and Bridgetown, the men’s vocal group from Warner Pacific College.“Every morning during the winter, our families with children have no place to go,” said WHO organizer Kevin Hiebert.Now, the WHO has found a partner willing to offer up some daytime space for those St. Andrew clients. That partner is The Giving Closet, a charity that distributes free clothing and other help to very low-income people. It’s a relatively low-profile agency with a big warehouse at 2804 N.E. 65th Ave. That’s about three miles from St. Andrew church at 5607 N.E. Gher Road.The Giving Closet has “this wonderful warehouse space that they currently use for their GED program, but they weren’t using it too much during the daytime,” Hiebert said.last_img

Leave a Reply

(*) Required, Your email will not be published