Las Vegas shelter to open 16-bed transitional housing program

Stacey Lockhart, executive director of The Shade Tree, gets emotional while talking about the families the nonprofit has helped during an event at Veterans Village on Las Vegas Boulevard South on Friday, April 6, 2018. Andrea Cornejo Las Vegas Review-Journal @dreacornejo
Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman addresses the crowd after a partnership announcement between Veterans Village and The Shade Tree Shelter for Homeless Women and Children at Veterans Village in Las Vegas on Friday, April 6, 2018. Andrea Cornejo Las Vegas Review-Journal @dreacornejo

Christian Gabroy, vice chair of The Shade Tree, talks about the partnership between Veterans Village and The Shade Tree Shelter for Homeless Women and Children at Veterans Village in Las Vegas on Friday, April 6, 2018. Andrea Cornejo Las Vegas Review-Journal @dreacornejo

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The Shade Tree women’s shelter will restart a segment of its transitional housing program at a 16-apartment complex in Las Vegas.

Shelter leaders announced plans in August to close the 160-bed transitional housing program due to a funding shortfall, and launched a $2.3 million fundraising effort — the amount Executive Director Stacey Lockhart said was needed to reopen and operate the shelter’s transitional housing.

“We’re not quite where we need to be,” she said Friday. “We still need to raise more money.”

The Shade Tree is about halfway to its fundraising goal, Lockhart said.

A new partnership with Las Vegas Family Housing Villages, an affordable housing nonprofit Veterans Village founder Arnold Stalk recently created, will allow some women to move from The Shade Tree 90-day emergency shelter into furnished apartments with stocked kitchens.

The 16 apartments, however, still need work, and Lockhart said she didn’t have an estimate for when women would be able to move in.

Women will be able to live in the apartments for up to a year, with access to The Shade Tree case managers, financial assistance and other services, while they work toward finding permanent housing, Lockhart said.

The Shade Tree has continued to operate its emergency shelter, which houses women and their children for up to 90 days, despite the closure of the transitional housing program.

Stalk called developing more affordable and transitional housing “the only solution to the homeless problem in Southern Nevada.”

Stalk, Lockhart and Las Vegas city officials gathered for the Friday announcement at the Veterans Village #2 campus. The new Shade Tree transitional apartments sit next to the building on the Veterans Village campus that houses women veterans.

Las Vegas ranks among the 10 U.S. cities with the largest homeless populations, according to an annual report by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The city of Las Vegas is slated to expand one of its programs for homeless next month, when the homeless services courtyard at Foremaster Lane and Las Vegas Boulevard is slated to move to a 24/7 operation. The courtyard is modeled after the Haven for Hope in San Antonio, Texas.

“We have a huge wave that got caught in bad challenges,” Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman said. “We want them to come into the Corridor of Hope, to find food, sanitation and safety, and to be able to make their lives better.”

Contact Jamie Munks at jmunks@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0340. Follow @Journo_Jamie_ on Twitter.

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