Cash-flow issues force Menlo Park shelter to shut doors 

A local homeless shelter is the latest victim of the economy.

InnVision — a Silicon Valley-based group that runs homeless shelters on the Peninsula — has announced the closing of its center in Menlo Park due to financial difficulties.

The Clara-Mateo Alliance shelter, which houses 38 families and 23 singles, is scheduled to shut its doors April 30.

“Every effort was made to keep CMA open,” InnVision President and CEO Christine Burroughs said in a statement. “Unfortunately, due to numerous factors including a difficult economy, we feel that the closure of CMA will allow us to focus our resources to ensure the continuation of our other programs throughout Silicon Valley and the Peninsula.”

Though the building that houses the center is scheduled for demolition next year, the shelter was allowed to stay through the end of December, said Anne-Marie Meacham, InnVision’s director of development. However, insufficient funding ended those plans.

“It was a very difficult decision that our board of directors had to make,” Meacham said.
Though the current residents will be relocated to other InnVision facilities on the Peninsula and in Silicon Valley, the closure will mean more than one less homeless shelter available.

The facility also houses the drop-in Elsa Segovia center, which provides food and showers to people who don’t live at the center, said Meacham.

The 70-bed CMA center has two main programs — a 90-day emergency shelter program and six-month transitional housing for residents with more stability.

The shelter receives funding from various sources, including about 20 percent from private grants and contributions, which are down, said Meacham.

“If conditions allow, we hope to reopen this shelter in the future at a different location,” Burroughs said.

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