Starting this Friday night, an additional 150-200 homeless will be on the streets of Santa Fe when the Interfaith Community Shelter closes its doors for the season.---
Sandra Tompkins, the shelter's executive director, tells SFR that people living out of their cars that park at Interfaith overnight will still have access to the lot.
"The gates will be open. People have stayed there off and on so it's not that they wouldn't be able to. But the expectation would be the same that they would hopefully take care of themselves and not bother others," she says.
According to an alert from Santa Fe Need and Deed, a partner of the shelter, people living in their vehicles will also be unable to park in the shelter's lot, as of this weekend. SFR placed calls with both the shelter and CIty of Santa Fe, but neither was immediately available for comment.
The shelter's temporary closure exaggerates an already tough month for the city's homeless. Earlier in April, city officials and a private property owner cleared campers from Hobo Hill, citing the risk of wildfire. Hobo Hill, the wooded area between Hyde Park and Bishop's Lodge Roads, has been a longtime campsite for people with nowhere else to live.
"To recently evict (even though legally) the 30-40 people living on Hobo Hill and then tell those at the shelter, ‘Good luck! Have a nice summer vacation; see you in the fall!’ is cruel," writes Martha Hamblen, executive director of Santa Fe Need and Deed, in an email to SFR.
Santa Fe Need and Deed is attempting to fill the void by issuing a call for
such as toothbrushes, toothpaste, and soap to help the newly homeless. They will accept all donated items at
Christ Church Santa Fe (1213 Don Gaspar) today or any Monday between 1 pm and 4 pm.
"In Santa Fe, we have a few services to cover these individuals. Not nearly enough," Hamblen writes.
On Friday, Need and Deed raised over $2,000 during their first fundraiser and food drive, featuring artwork by homeless artists, live music and dance.
"We will be doing another event like this in June...stay tuned," Hamblen writes.
Visit Christ Church Santa Fe (1213 Don Gaspar Ave.) between 1pm-4pm any Monday, or contact Martha Hamblen: firstname.lastname@example.org