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Shelter shutters until December

Homeless haven serves last breakfast of the season

Posted: March 17, 2009 12:33 a.m.
Updated: March 17, 2009 4:59 a.m.
 
Just days short of the first day of spring, the valley's winter homeless shelter served its last breakfast and closed its doors for another season.

The Santa Clarita Valley Emergency Winter Shelter gave 25 people a place to sleep Sunday night before sending them off with a hot breakfast Monday morning, said Tim Davis, executive director of the Santa Clarita Community Develop Corp., which operates the shelter.

Open between Dec. 1 and March 15, the shelter provides the valley's homeless a place to sleep, eat a hot meal, wash up and receive assistance in trying to get their lives back on track.

"It's very sad," Davis said. "They don't have a place tonight."

On a positive note, he said this was a successful season for the shelter, with headway made in helping clients pursue jobs and homes.

"It just feels like right now we've done better than in the past," Davis said Monday.

A longtime goal has also come to fruition, Davis said, in the form of the "super-landlord program."

Under the program, the Development Corp. is leasing a local apartment, Davis said, and sub-letting it to a shelter client who is on his way to being back on his feet.

One of the biggest differences Davis saw at the shelter this year was a greater influx of two-parent families - a possible sign of the tolls of the U.S. economy's nosedive.

Davis expected to have complete numbers on the clients assisted by the shelter later this week.

Located in several portable buildings off Golden Valley Road near county Fire Station 104, the shelter has a capacity of about 40 people. The 2009-10 season will be its third and final at that location, before it moves to a location off Drayton Street.

Families who use the shelter are given vouchers for local motels.

The shelter has given the roughly 150 homeless people in Santa Clarita Valley a place to stay for more than 10 years.

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