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News / Business / Clark County Business

Grants allow Council for the Homeless to move into new headquarters

New location will house all staff at one site in central Vancouver

By Mia Ryder-Marks, Columbian staff reporter
Published: May 15, 2024, 2:21pm

Council for the Homeless will soon serve the community from a new, central Vancouver headquarters.

“This new location not only brings us all under one roof in a healthful and productive way but places us in a central location to address the homeless and housing instability crisis in Clark County,” Executive Director Sesany Fennie-Jones said in a statement.

As Clark County grapples with an affordable housing and homelessness crisis, the local nonprofit — which offers shelter and housing resources and rent assistance, among other services — has increased staff to meet the need. For years, staff worked from buildings on opposite sides of town — off of Main Street in the Vancouver Housing Authority building and on Andresen Road with the Share headquarters.

“The people served by (Council for the Homeless)will benefit from having one location to visit for assistance, thus avoiding confusion between our two current offices,” Fennie-Jones said.

Now with financial support from The Firstenburg Foundation and public and private grants, the nonprofit will soon move its staff to 7723 N.E. Fourth Plain Blvd., Suite D, Vancouver.

Council for the Homeless is planning a fundraising campaign to pay off loans and ensure long-term success in the new headquarters. There is no move-in date.

The nonprofit bought the location for $3.4 million.

The new headquarters is close to several housing developments.

Fennie-Jones also said the singular building will be a boon to staff mental health. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many began working from home and continued to do so because of limited space in both offices.

“For many, their job is helping people who are badly traumatized. When staff are in the office, they are in a supportive environment while helping people in crisis and staff have separation between work life and home life,” Fennie-Jones said. “With our single headquarters facility, they can leave that trauma at work and return home to their serenity.”

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This story was made possible by Community Funded Journalism, a project from The Columbian and the Local Media Foundation. Top donors include the Ed and Dollie Lynch Fund, Patricia, David and Jacob Nierenberg, Connie and Lee Kearney, Steve and Jan Oliva, The Cowlitz Tribal Foundation and the Mason E. Nolan Charitable Fund. The Columbian controls all content. For more information, visit columbian.com/cfj.