After five years of helping homeless men in Anaheim get off the streets, the Salvation Army is ready to begin helping women.
The organization, which has provided adult rehabilitation care for men at its live-in facility in Anaheim, has long sensed the need to provide similar care for women in the community but has been unable to afford the venture until recently.
“It’s been on our checklist of things to do for a long time,” said Maj. David G. Boyd, administrator of the Anaheim adult rehabilitation center. “We just haven’t had the money to do it.”
Early next year, the group will receive $275,000 from the state through the city Housing Authority to build the shelter.
City officials, using figures from the Orange County Homeless Issues Task Force, estimate that 10,000 homeless people living in the county, of whom 25% are women.
Sensing the growing need for care for homeless women, based on filled-to-capacity women’s shelters elsewhere in the county, the city decided to award the grant to the Salvation Army for its proposed facility.
Currently, there are no women’s shelters in Anaheim, and only one other shelter for families--the Halcyon House operated by Anaheim Interfaith Shelter.
“We haven’t been able to help women break the cycle of homelessness, and we just felt there was a real need for that,” Boyd said.
No location has been selected for the center, though Salvation Army and city officials are seeking a site, possibly a large home, in central Anaheim to establish a 25-bed facility.
The program will cost about $225,000 annually to operate and will be run in a manner similar to the group’s adult rehabilitation services for men: Residents must be sober and drug-free when they enter, and they are asked to make a six-month commitment to the program.