Relief for the homeless in our community now is that much closer at hand.

Judging by the most recent Point in Time Count, little progress has been made locally in vanquishing this grisly crisis. Homelessness is up nearly 17% year-on-year.

But all hope is not lost. As of Wednesday morning, the Chelan-Douglas Homeless Housing Network – a centralized service provider for those without permanent shelter –
is up and running in downtown Wenatchee.

Located on the first floor of Link Transit’s Columbia Station (300 S. Columbia St.), the Homeless Housing Network is open five days a week, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. According to a press release, this space is staffed by “three Chelan County employees who will be responsible for connecting people to the services they qualify for throughout Chelan and Douglas counties.”

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“The Homeless Housing Network can be accessed by (at) 509-436-9086” or by filling out an online form. “If people call the phone number, a staff member will help them fill out the form.”

“Staff members then assess what programs people may qualify for based on their specific situation; staff makes referrals” to participating agencies. These include Chelan Valley Hope, the Community Action Council and the Wenatchee Valley YWCA, among others.

“If someone fills out an application online, they should expect to receive a phone call back from staff within one business day…(staff) will not only answer calls to the program but also speak with anyone in need of services who walks up to the office’s large, open counter.”

The location of the Homeless Housing Network, says program manager Sasha Sleiman, is strategic and not by accident.

“It was important for us to be near public transit to better meet people where they are at,” Sleiman says. “We’re grateful that Link Transit saw our vision and is hosting us at Columbia Station. We couldn’t do this without them.”

Click here for more detailed information on local housing services.

For assistance navigating the Homeless Housing Network application process, click here.

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