Set to open Thanksgiving Day, the Corvallis Daytime Drop-In Center will settle into new digs at 530 SW Fourth Street after months of changing locations. CDDC serves individuals experiencing homelessness, or low income. They also serve people with mental health and substance abuse issues.
The Drop-In Center has been operating at the First United Methodist Church since October. The center had been planning on a Second Street location to be shared with other groups, but with that option now off the table they were looking for a spot to call home. The center has moved three times over the summer.
“We were at one location for over ten years, we had a lease, but we wanted our own space. We thought we had a place but it fell through,” said CDDC director Aleita Hass-Holcombe.
The new Fourth Street location came with some controversy. Holcombe said the neighborhood appealed the permit for the center. However, that appeal has apparently now been withdrawn. Holcombe said they are waiting for a building inspection, which should happen any day.
Some will recall this new site was once an emergency overnight cold weather shelter for men, and that operation became the subject of a lawsuit filed by a neighboring property owner. The suit was settled when the shelter operator agreed to cease offering overnight sheltering, and the building has now been sold to downtown property owner Hugh White.
White explaining his decision to lease the property to the CDDC, said, “My wife Elizabeth and I saw them [CDDC] getting moved around from place to place, and we didn’t think that was healthy, and thought they should have a home.”
According to Holcombe, the Fourth Street address has advantages over their current location. She said the resources are easier to access for the homeless population at the new location because of its proximity to the downtown area. The location is also very close to a bus stop, which is how many of the center’s visitors get around.
One other advantage of the new location is the center can return to its standard hours, which are 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Because of scheduling conflicts, the Drop-In Center has only been able to be open from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m., at the Methodist church.
Holcombe said The Drop-In Center will be able to stay at the Fourth Street location for as long as they would like and she added they want to stay there for a long time. The only reason she could see moving would be if a more convenient location opened up.
“If something came up that was in the best interest of the people we serve we would consider moving, but I’m glad to have found a place where people’s needs can be met,” said Holcombe.
For information on the services that the Drop In Center provides, or for volunteer opportunities please visit Corvallisddc.org
By Jonah Anderson