Catholic Charities to end services at temporary family warming center due to decreased demand

SPOKANE, Wash. — Less families are seeking emergency shelter services in Spokane, Catholic Charities of Eastern Washington announced Friday, detailing a decision to halt services at its temporary warming center and re-allocate funds to better help people experiencing homelessness in the region.

Catholic Charities partnered with Family Promise back in December, 2019, to open a temporary family warming center. Though initially scheduled to operate for four months, the pandemic brought with it a greater need for services and the shelter remained open. The center has cared for 33 families since it opened, and helped 28 people find employment, according to a release.

Catholic Charities says it’s seen a decrease in people accessing services at both sites in recent months.

“We attribute this to more families accessing services and no longer needing emergency shelter,” it reads in the release.

With this in mind, the City of Spokane and Catholic Charities have decided to cease operations at the temporary center. Instead, funding will go toward 24-hour shelter services for men, weekend services for women, and other efforts to reduce COVID exposure, Catholic Charities says.

“CCEW is thankful for the opportunity to provide this temporary service and will continue to work with the City and Family Promise to ensure homeless families in our region always have a safe place to shelter and receive support,” said Dawn Kinder, Vice President of Stabilization Services.

The temporary warming center will run through Jan. 31. Families still in need of service will be transferred to Family Promise or housed before the closure.