Left out in the cold - Coeur d'Alene Press: Local News

Left out in the cold

St. Vincent de Paul won't open Cd'A warming shelter

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Wednesday, October 26, 2011 12:00 am

COEUR d'ALENE - A financial shortfall will prevent St. Vincent de Paul from opening its Coeur d'Alene warming shelter this winter.

Jeff Conroy, SVDP director, said the nonprofit had to choose which of its two overnight centers it wanted to keep open - selecting the higher-capacity Post Falls location as the one - in light of dropping donations.

"It's going to be a strain," Conroy said of the increased demand.

The Coeur d'Alene warming center, located behind the SVDP thrift store off Government Way, held 15 people, and had been in operation for three years. The Post Falls center, housed in a basement of the Kamps Apartment Complex behind the SVDP thrift store on Seltice Way, holds around 50 people.

Together, it cost $40,000 to run both during the winter. Conroy said they chose to keep the Post Falls site running for location purposes, since Coeur d'Alene has another warming center, Fresh Start, that could handle the extra capacity.

"People in Post Falls shouldn't have to come to Coeur d'Alene to get warm," Conroy said.

Last year, the centers - which allow homeless people to spend the night when temperatures drop below freezing - were open 45 nights. The Post Falls facility center will be open Tuesday.

Howard Martinson, Fresh Start director, said his warming center has enough space to handle the increased demand, should it come his way.

The warming center on Sherman Avenue has a maximum capacity of 64, but also has available space in St. Luke's Episcopal Church at 501 E. Wallace Ave. should Fresh Start get too full.

Martinson said the space is never utilized, so they have room for overflow.

Fresh Start opens at 20 degrees from 8 p.m. to noon the following day. Last year it provided 825 bed nights, over 30 days.

"We're prepared, we're staffed," Martinson said. "And we've had very generous support in the past."

Closing the Coeur d'Alene location will save SVDP $400 a night on staff, plus expenses tied to driving the clientele over to Post Falls when the Lake City space was full, as well as other supplies.

How to help

A number of fundraisers are planned during November, which is Homeless Awareness Month. All proceeds will go to the Coeur d'Alene warming shelter.

* Hoops for Homeless; 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 19 at the Kroc Center. Adult, men's, women's, and coed teams cost $100. Info: Marvin Sears, 659-2363 or marvins@kleinsdki.com

* Soup Off! Soup making contest; 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 17 at the Kootenai County Fairgrounds. Tickets cost $10. Info: 664-3095

More about

More about

More about

  • Discuss

Welcome to the discussion.


  • soxin8 posted at 5:31 pm on Fri, Oct 28, 2011.

    soxin8 Posts: 3

    Please read my story of Masters degree to homelessness with a search for "New police weapon against homeless" on homeless forums. Bill Anderson

  • Mac posted at 9:14 am on Thu, Oct 27, 2011.

    Mac Posts: 79

    Consider this, (tongue in cheek)
    Great Idea RL

    It be so much less expensive to give away a 'one way ticket' via bus or train to Phoenix or San Diego than pay for the homeless' food and shelter expense throughout a winter. Maybe even give them a CdA Resort baseball cap or tee shirt as a souvenir. How many cold homeless derelicts would turn down that offer? Problem solved. Hummm?

  • RL posted at 8:35 pm on Wed, Oct 26, 2011.

    RL Posts: 161

    "Why don't they go to where it's warm?" para-phrasing Sam Kinison.

  • WilliamWMiller posted at 3:33 pm on Wed, Oct 26, 2011.

    WilliamWMiller Posts: 106

    Chief enough blankets, if one followed your example one could assume your an American Indian, you talk likeTanto, you ride a spotted horse, you go on the warpath, you drink firewater, you think whites owe you something and your the first to scream racism if you do not get your way. Save your insulting assumptions for yourself.

  • Tad Leach posted at 12:16 pm on Wed, Oct 26, 2011.

    Tad Leach Posts: 6

    Chief, I also think Mr. Miller's statement leaves much to be desired, but you need to stop stereotyping. You also should read "Who Really Cares" by Arthur Brooks. His impeccable research shows conservatives give more money (including to non-religious organizations), contribute more blood and donate more time per capita than professed liberals. I'm speaking as a Republican who donates a significant portion of my income to charity (more than our President who makes a lot more than I do), adopted a minority child (through a non-profit organization so it didn't cost tax payers a dime) and donated a kidney to a stranger.
    On the other hand I at least give credit to Mr. Miller who has the courage of his convictions to use his name.

  • Chief Many Blankets posted at 11:41 am on Wed, Oct 26, 2011.

    Chief Many Blankets Posts: 19

    Let me guess, Mr. Bill Miller. You are a Republican. Pretty good of me, huh? I know these things because You People would think it was funny if people froze to death. You're inhuman. Maybe karma will come around and you'll find yourself out in the cold some night.

  • WilliamWMiller posted at 8:36 am on Wed, Oct 26, 2011.

    WilliamWMiller Posts: 106

    We are being beat to death by non-profits, they are becoming the business or income earning places for many people. Its time to cut these down to reasonable size, like by 75%. At least these folk have the right direction, when you don't have enough cut.

default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
Not you?||
Logout|My Dashboard