ANAHEIM, Calif. (Dec. 20, 2018) — Anaheim has opened an interim emergency shelter in an astonishing 14 days and already is providing urgent help to those in need and addressing impacts on parks and neighborhoods.
The shelter, at 2040 S. State College Blvd., opened Thursday morning and has started taking in pre-registered residents who previously were living outside in the cold.
Others will continue coming in Thursday with expanded outreach Friday and beyond.
The shelter is a safe, warm and inviting alternative for those living on the streets, in parks and other public spaces in Anaheim.
“For someone who has been living on the streets, this shelter is the next best thing to a home as possible,” Mayor Harry Sidhu said. “It will literally change lives while also allowing us to serve all of Anaheim by addressing the impacts of homelessness on our parks, streets, neighborhoods and businesses.”
Prior to opening, 155 people pre-registered to transition to the shelter through extensive outreach by Anaheim’s nonprofit partners and the Orange County Health Care Agency.
With the opening of the shelter, social workers are transporting people and their pets and belongings to the shelter as an alternative to living in parks, alongside sidewalks and other spaces. The shelter will allow Anaheim to address unsustainable encampments at Maxwell Park, La Palma Park and other public spaces.
The shelter is a first step out of homelessness with case management, counseling, job assistance and other ongoing services.
The shelter is expected to operate for about 90 days, closing once two temporary shelters in the works open in late January and February.
The interim emergency shelter is the result of a public-private partnership with the business community to benefit the homeless and Anaheim’s neighborhoods.
Major Anaheim businesses have committed $350,000 in funding for the shelter plus donations of furniture, building materials and services.
The donations from the business community will help offset the use of city resources for the shelter construction and operation.
The city of Anaheim has provided up to $1.4 million for buildout of the shelter and its operation by Orange-based nonprofit Illumination Foundation.
Anaheim is already partnering with Illumination Foundation on the planned 101-bed shelter at 3035 E. La Mesa St. in an industrial part of east Anaheim that is set to open by February.
Some furnishings and other resources from the State College site will transfer over to the La Mesa site.
The La Mesa site is one of two facilities that will provide a total of 325 shelter beds for those living in homelessness in Anaheim.
The other site, in an industrial section of central Anaheim, is in partnership with the Salvation Army. The 224-bed shelter at 1340 S. Lewis St. is set to come online in January.
All of Anaheim’s shelter sites will include extensive operational and security oversight to ensure they are good neighbors.
Anaheim Police will oversee security planning and conduct regular patrols of the sites, supplemented by onsite security and rules barring loitering, walk-ups and drop-offs.
You can learn more about the shelters at Anaheim.net/shelterplan.
To learn more about all we are doing to address homelessness, visit Anaheim.net/homeless.