Snoqualmie Valley Winter Shelter Director Jennifer Kirk sent out a heartfelt thank you to the community this week for making the overnight homeless shelter’s 3rd season in the Valley a success.
The shelter, run by Valley Renewal Center, opened in early December 2014 and closed (for the season)on May 1, 2015. This was the first season the shelter operated in both North Bend and Snoqualmie, having moved from Mount Si Lutheran Church in North Bend to Snoqualmie’s United Methodist Church at the end of February.
Hundreds of Snoqualmie Valley volunteers provided hot meals each night, breakfast every morning and donated needed items throughout the 2014-15 season. In total, the community provided 2,724 hot meals, with the shelter and hosting churches providing 1,974 bed nights to those in need.
According to Valley Renewal Center’s website, the Winter Shelter provided overnight services to 94 individuals this season – 77 men, 13 women and 4 children. All but five of the individuals were from the Snoqualmie Valley.
Kirk stated via email that “in addition to providing life-saving overnight services, this season’s successes included accessing health insurance benefits, medical and dental care, substance abuse treatment, mental health treatment, new food benefits, Social Security benefits, employment and housing.”
Valley Renewal says it’s #1 goal is to provide life-saving shelter to those experiencing homelessness. The organization explained that through the shelter they are able to build connections and lasting relationships with individuals “who have been isolated from mainstream society.”
During the shelter’s off-season, Kirk and her team will be working with local governments and area churches to build a strong foundation for the 2015-16 season and prepare to continue serving the Snoqualmie Valley homeless population.
More information about the Snoqualmie Valley Winter Shelter can be found at: www.valleyrenewalcenter.com.