Homeless shelters gear up for cold, rainy season

With cold, winter rains returning to the West Valley this week, after many long months, local homeless shelters and warming centers are gearing up for a busy season ahead.

San Jose recently opened two warming shelters, which will stay open each night until April. The shelters, at Roosevelt Community Center and Bascom Community Center, have a capacity of approximately 60.

Meanwhile, in Sunnyvale the North County Shelter is increasing capacity from 125 to 175 beds. The cold weather shelter in Mountain View, which opened in 2017, has capacity for 50, including 10 families. It opens for the season on December 2.

The North County Shelter in Sunnyvale became a year-round shelter earlier this year following a unanimous vote by Santa Clara County’s Board of Supervisors.

HomeFirst, a local non-profit, operates the two shelters.

“We’re happy to continue to provide accommodations and support services in Mountain View and Sunnyvale. As homelessness continues to increase in the County, these shelters are vital to the health of the community,” said Andrea Urton, CEO of HomeFirst.

While homeless shelters in San Francisco and other parts of the Bay Area have been the source of significant pushback from residents, County Supervisor Joe Simitian noted the supportive response in Mountain View.

“Even though the Mountain View Shelter is immediately adjacent to a residential neighborhood, it was approved and has been operating with no opposition from local residents,” said Simitian.

A number of local agencies and organizations are involved in supporting these shelters, including Community Services Agency of Mountain View and Los Altos, Hope’s Corner, Los Altos United Methodist Church, the County Office of Supportive Housing and West Valley Community Services.

If you want to volunteer your time, or support meal services at a shelter, click here.