The Family Shelter was launched in early 2017 in order to meet the unique and complex needs of families experiencing homelessness. It comes as a surprise to very few that a large number of people we serve here are families with children that are experiencing homelessness. While homelessness is tragic regardless of the individual it impacts, there is an additional degree of awfulness when children are involved.
Over time, PADS has had a number of different programs for families with children, each one trying to meet the unique needs that families have as they strive to get back into housing. We and our partners are constantly making incremental changes in order to best serve this very vulnerable population.
The Family Shelter launched thanks to the support of the Gorter Family Foundation. Our Family Shelter program is designed to meet the short-term, immediate needs of families that are experiencing homelessness in an environment that is welcoming and appropriate for children. We work with the families to get them out of shelter as quickly as possible so that they can get back on their feet and into housing of their own.
Research shows that the longer one is forced to linger in shelter, the more difficult it is to exit. So while we work to make the length of stay short with intensive services, we want to make sure that the stay provides dignity and comfort — especially for children.