South Lake Tahoe Warm Room confirms closing date for season | TahoeDailyTribune.com

South Lake Tahoe Warm Room confirms closing date for season

South Lake Tahoe City Council completed negotiations for a four-month lease of a city-owned building on Rufus Allen Boulevard for the Warm Room shelter.

The Warm Room, South Shore's only overnight seasonal homeless shelter, will close on April 1 for the season.

Tahoe Coalition for the Homeless (TCH), the nonprofit that operates the Warm Room, confirmed the closing date in a press release.

"All of our staff and volunteers have done an incredible job coming together this season," Annie Davidson, a TCH board member and the organization's volunteer coordinator, said in the release. "Even though the winter this season was not as severe as last season, there have been periods of extended cold and snow that would have been extremely challenging for anyone without shelter."

The Warm Room opened for the season on Christmas Eve at the Lake Tahoe Community Presbyterian Church. The church stepped up, allowing the shelter to open before TCH could secure a one-time lease for a vacant building owned by the city of South Lake Tahoe at 1195 Rufus Allen Blvd.

On Feb. 15, TCH hosted an open house at the Warm Room to honor the South Shore's faith community for its support since the TCH's inception. The coalition gave special recognition to Rev. Hillary Bittman of Unity at the Lake, Father Mauricio Hurtado of St. Theresa Catholic Church, Rev. Robert C. Kelley of Lake Tahoe Community Presbyterian Church, and Rabbi Evon Yakar of Temple Bat Yam for their support.

"We would not be operating at the level we are today without the support of South Lake Tahoe's religious institutions," Dr. Marissa Muscat, TCH's executive director, said in the release.

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"Local faith-based organizations have helped us to raise funds, collect supplies, recruit volunteers, promote awareness, and facilitate our operations."

The closing of the Warm Room for the season, Muscat added, does not signal the end of TCH's efforts.

"Although the Warm Room will be closing, our staff and volunteers will continue to engage with the homeless community year round in order to assist with housing and provide access to resources."

TCH welcomes donations — which can be made online at tahoehomeless.org — to aid in funding the Warm Room and TCH's other operations.