A newly renovated 3,600 square-foot shelter is up-and-running in Phoenix. This space is ready to serve as a transitional home for 34 homeless Arizona residents. Much thanks for this project must go to Community Bridges.
Community Bridges is a non-profit organization that has been running for 31 years and counting. They provide medical and behavioral health care throughout 14 Arizona communities. These communities lie within the following counties:
This newly renovated Phoenix facility has been given the moniker, “The Bridge.” Its name is a metaphor for its purpose. Homeless men are expected to use The Bridge as an opportunity to shorten their transition time from being homeless to securing permanent housing.
As the Community Bridges Housing and Community Integration Director, Elizabeth Dacosta stated, ‘“There still is a process in order for them to get through a briefing, locating a good apartment, getting their IDs – all of those things that take them from the streets into their apartment. That length of time can go anywhere from 30 to 60 days.”
Located at Van Buren and 28th Street, The Bridge is conveniently next door to the Community Bridges Central City Addiction and Recovery Center. This location will make an easier transition from one phase to the next on the road to recovery.
“The Bridge will serve as Maricopa County’s first temporary housing facility for general mental health and substance-using individuals,” said Blythe Fitzharris. Blythe is the Chief Clinical Officer of Mercy Care. Mercy Care worked with the Arizona Department of Economic Security, the city of Phoenix, and Community Bridges on opening The Bridge.
Blythe Fitzharris continued about the location, “This will provide a safe place for them to stay while looking for permanent housing options.”
Staffing at The Bridge will consist of seven full-time Navigators and a Program Manager. They will work with applicants at The Bridge to create a strategy for finding permanent housing. From there, the staff will help the applicant sees through with those plans.
Other parts of the program include life skills education and a curriculum aimed toward helping people create a life after addiction. Their classes are targeted at recovery and thriving in your newfound sobriety.