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Fullerton : Homeless Shelter Closes Due to Lack of Response

A shelter for mentally ill homeless women that opened three weeks ago has closed because too few clients used the facility, sponsors said.

Kayes’s Shelter, in the 200 block of East Amerige Avenue, had been the only shelter in the county designed specifically for mentally ill women who are homeless, said Donald Baumeister, director of Western Youth Services, a nonprofit service group that opened the facility.

Under terms of a contract with the county, the group was to receive $15 a day for each bed occupied at the shelter. Shelter officials said at least 13 beds a night would have to be occupied at the 20-bed facility for it to break even financially.

However, only five woman have used the shelter since it opened just less than a month ago.

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Baumeister blamed the shelter’s failure on several factors, including the warm weather and lack of advertising, and said his group will meet with county officials Monday to discuss conditions under which the shelter might reopen.

Although the shelter was the only one specifically for homeless women, county officials said there are several other shelters in the county that serve the homeless mentally ill.


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