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Corpus Christi, Interfaith Sanctuary partner to keep day shelter services open

The day shelter initially decided earlier this week it would have to close due to a lack of volunteers to run the facility and concerns about residents gathering.
Credit: Theresa Palmgren/KTVB
A volunteer serves food at Interfaith Sanctuary.

BOISE, Idaho — Corpus Christi House Day Shelter will continue to operate on a daily basis despite the ongoing public health crisis.

The Idaho Press reports the day shelter initially decided earlier this week it would have to close due to a lack of volunteers to run the facility and concerns about residents gathering there amid concerns of COVID-19 spreading in the homeless community. After a few days of discussions, Corpus Christi and Interfaith Sanctuary have formed a partnership to continue offering meal service, showers, restrooms, mail service and a place to stay during the day.

“Our side of things is very simple,” Chad Summerville, with Corpus Christi House, said Wednesday.

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His organization will keep the building open for a limited number of guests to come in to shower, use the restroom and check their mail. These services will be operated by Corpus Christi volunteers, instead of Interfaith Sanctuary staffers as originally discussed earlier in the week. Currently most of the volunteers at Corpus Christi are retired, so Summerville encouraged anyone young, healthy and interested in helping the homeless to contact Corpus Christi House to help. 

Interfaith Sanctuary will serve three meals a day on the shelter’s property and allow guests and those who would normally stay at Corpus Christi be on the property for the day. Jodi Peterson-Stigers, Interfaith Sanctuary executive director, said she is working with her staff members to offer some activities for residents during the day.

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“I am trying to convince one of my case managers to do bingo every Wednesday,” she said.

The only city funds being used for this increased programming are portable bathrooms on site for those staying on Interfaith property during the day and money to pay for lunches provided by nonprofit Life’s Kitchen.

Homeless shelters, like Interfaith and Corpus Christi, are not impacted by Gov. Brad Little’s stay-at-home order issued Wednesday.

More from our partner Idaho Press: Boise City Council asking for state action on evictions

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