December 21 at 8:30am

Interfaith gives the gift of shelter this Christmas

hh2Interfaith Community Services gave an unprecedented gift to homeless individuals in North County this Christmas – the region’s first year-round emergency shelter. With a successful final inspection from the City of Escondido, the new year-round Haven House Emergency Shelter opened its doors on December 23rd to provide up to 49 homeless men and women each night with a safe, secure, and warm place to sleep.

“The opportunity to open the first year-round emergency shelter in the history of our North County community is monumental,” said Greg Anglea, Executive Director of Interfaith Community Services. “Haven House has a proven track record, so we’re excited to build off of that model and provide housing to those on our streets – especially just in time for Christmas. We hope this makes the holiday season a little brighter for nearly 50 members of our community in critical need of help.”

The new year-round Haven House Emergency Shelter focuses on providing shelter to those who are either already working, or are on-track to gain employment, for whom housing assistance will allow them to achieve self-sufficiency and stabilization. As a proven successful model, the year-round shelter will be operated similarly to the single-season winter shelter. By offering access to basic necessities such as shelter and food, in tandem with comprehensive case management and support, 57% of individuals provided housing through Haven House last winter went on to secure safe and affordable housing.

“This is about much more than just an emergency shelter,” said Anglea. “It’s about creating a continuum of care for the poorest and most vulnerable in our community. With a year-round shelter, we can and we will provide better tomorrows for those facing difficult todays.”

Interfaith is asking for help from the community to raise the funds needed to complete this project. Estimated first year costs are $500,000, including the renovation of the winter shelter and operating costs including food, staffing and access to programs. Interfaith has secured an initial private gift of $250,000 and is seeking to match that with an additional $250,000 in donations. To date, $70,000 is still needed in community support to make the year-round shelter a reality.  In addition, Interfaith is asking the community to donate new sleeping bags to the shelter’s residents.  For more information on making an in-kind donation, please call (760) 489-6380 or click here.

Donations can be made by clicking here.