Footbridge Services Center,
Secret Garden Women's Shelter
We regret to inform that these programs are closing.
The quick reason for this is that sustaining funding has continually fallen short. This has been exacerbated by our opening a new needs-oriented program each year. The poorly conceived and managed funding paradigms of local governments, in contrast with the establishment of repeating mega-camps has created an illogical contradiction in our community that has driven people away from donating to and volunteering for needs-oriented programs such as ours. More and more, grant funding demands that programs have a housing-first focus, despite the fact that housing isn't available in Santa Cruz. There are a dozen more reasons that have converged to inspire this closing but in short, the city and county take these efficient and well-run programs for granted as they ride for free on our backs. In order for them to continue beyond the planned destruction of our current building and in more robust ways in the future, they need to go away to prove their value.
Footbridge Services Center has offered free storage for more than 5 years serving more than 1,000 clients. We've done more than 10,000 loads of laundry in 4 years and have offered the hottest, and cleanest 50 showers each Sunday for the past 3 years. Additionally, we offer a robust donation materials distribution center, including 100 basic-needs items from blankets, clothing, warm-weather gear, to all hygiene items such as razors, deodorant, toothpaste, and feminine products.
Our community demands that any storage program in the future must include these services.
Secret Garden Women's Shelter successfully shelters as many as 12 women each night (including a quarantine bed). This is our 2nd year in operation as a volunteer-supported dorm community. Several private outdoor areas, a community room, kitchen area, and weekly laundry and shower programs have set this shelter apart from the rest. Featuring an Achievable Goals case work program, shelter residents are prepared to move to better circumstances.
Press Release: Program Closure Announcement