Harbor of Hope opens new homeless shelter


Harbor for Hope's newest facility opens Monday, Aug. 26

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Portland’s homeless crisis has many organizations and businesses trying to find ways they can help. The latest project to make it happen is Oregon Harbor of Hope’s new homeless shelter.

Today celebrated the grand opening of the Navigation Center on Naito Parkway.

Oregon Harbor of Hope founder Homer Williams had the vision to take an empty plot of land and turn it into a shelter and resource center to rehabilitate people living on the streets.

“We have in our own city our own humanitarian crisis,” he said.

With 100 beds, this facility will house people for weeks at a time — giving them the healthcare, case management, addiction treatment and employment services to lead them towards housing of their own.

Williams said every citizen and business needs to join in this effort to help the homeless.

“Today this is a step on a very, very long journey,” he said.

Tim Boyle of Columbia Sportswear donated $1.5 million to this project. Without it, Williams said, this homeless shelter wouldn’t be possible.

“I think everyone should really be focused on contributing to the construction of more of these structures or to volunteer your time,” said Boyle.

The private and public sector partnered to create this shelter and resource center. Mayor Ted Wheeler said this approach is far more effective than just giving people a place to sleep for a night.

“We’re intentionally designing dignified spaces for people to get connected to services and back into housing so that they don’t ever have to go back out to the streets,” said Wheeler.

This new center, called the Harbor of Hope Navigation Center, will provide clean beds and case management for up to 100 adults who are currently living on the streets. They’ll be given meals, restrooms, showers and private laundry service. 

There are rules — drugs and alcohol are not allowed. There are addiction treatment and employment services available.

Shelter leaders said their approach has been proven to work — and that’s to offer not just shelter, but those essential support services to get people out of the cycle of addiction and homelessness and set them on the path to recovery.

Wheeler said this place is truly a harbor of hope.

Bunk beds at the new Navigation Center on Aug. 26, 2019. (KOIN)

The center is open to men, women and couples. It’s located at 1111 Northwest Naito Parkway, just off the Broadway Bridge.

Showers at the new Navigation Center on August 26, 2019. (KOIN)

The Navigation Center celebrated its grand opening on Monday morning with an open house kickoff.

The City and County’s Joint Office of Homeless Services will pay Transition Projects more than $1 million a year to operate the shelter, alongside its other shelter programs.

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