Mountain View Cold Weather Shelter Reopening Soon

MOUNTAIN VIEW COLD WEATHER SHELTER REOPENING SOON

SAN JOSE – Santa Clara County’s Cold Weather Shelter Program returns to Mountain View this winter, at a reduced capacity to allow for social distancing and other COVID-19 safety protocols. The program will aim to provide up to 30 beds nightly for single women and families with a target start date of November 29 (the Monday after Thanksgiving).

“As our recent weather has made apparent, the cold and rainy season has arrived,” said Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian, who first proposed the shelter in 2017, and recently voted with the rest of the County Board of Supervisors to allocate funding to the program. “It’s critical that we prepare now to make sure our residents are safe and sheltered once temperatures drop even further.”

“People need a place to go, particularly when the weather is cold and wet, it’s as simple as that,” Simitian added.

The Mountain View Cold Weather Shelter program, which operates out of the Mountain View campus of Los Altos United Methodist Church (at the corner of Hope and Mercy Streets), has been in operation every cold weather season since 2017. Last year, the program operated out of local motels due to limitations posed by COVID-19.

The Mountain View shelter serves single women and families, populations Simitian describes as “particularly vulnerable” and in need of assistance.

“We’re delighted that the cold weather shelter at Los Altos UMC’s Mountain View campus will start up again in November,” said Los Altos United Methodist Church’s Pastor Kathi McShane. “This partnership between Santa Clara County and the church is right at the center of our work in Mountain View, which is all about the sacred act of neighboring. The winter shelter joins Hope’s Corner, CHAC’s Family Resource Center, the culinary skills training center, the after-school program called Art Changes Us, and community-building at Front Porch—all programs that are about creating a community where everyone can flourish.”

Clients for the homeless shelter are referred by the Santa Clara County Shelter Hotline (408-385-2400) and local nonprofits, and, as in the past, HomeFirst will be the nonprofit operator of the shelter program. The Church also continues to partner with a number of groups to host services at the site, including Hope’s Corner’s meal and shower program and a County-sponsored culinary job training program run by JobTrain and LifeMoves. Both the meal program and job training effort are run out of a newly remodeled kitchen funded in large part by the County.

Simitian said, “I am so gratified by the partnerships that have made all this possible; the County, the City, the Hope’s Corner nonprofit, HomeFirst, LifeMoves, JobTrain and of course, the Church itself have all stepped up. And kudos to the community for welcoming these services into the neighborhood.”

The opening of the shelter this season will further augment Mountain View’s supply of emergency shelter, which has grown significantly over the past year since LifeMoves’ new interim housing site on Leghorn Street opened in May. Funded by a number of public and private partners, including the County, City, and State, the new LifeMoves site added 124 new year-round temporary beds to help get folks off the street quickly and transition them to permanent housing.

Simitian notes that “Doing more is always the goal, but offering multiple options is also important given the differing needs and circumstances of the folks we’re hoping to serve.”

Simitian said the new LifeMoves site is an invaluable addition to the city. But with over 600 unhoused residents in Mountain View alone per the latest count, “we continue to need more options for folks who don’t have somewhere warm and dry to lay their heads down at night.”

As part of that effort, Simitian also pushed to extend operations of the County’s Sunnyvale shelter in 2018. Originally established as a temporary cold weather shelter operating for four months a year, the shelter now runs year round. HomeFirst also manages operations at the Sunnyvale shelter.

Learn more about the programs here: https://www.homefirstscc.org/programs. For more information on shelter locations and warming centers around Santa Clara County, visit the Office of Supportive Housing’s website at: https://osh.sccgov.org/need-assistance.

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Press Releases

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Housing & Homelessness

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