Almost six months after reopening following a hiatus – West Seattle-based shelter program Family Promise of Seattle says it’s closing again, and this time it’s permanent.
After getting an e-mail announcement, we called to talk with executive director Norman Schwamberg, and he tells us the board determined “there just wasn’t sufficient money to continue operation and not really any hope in the foreseeable future to (generate money) to reopen with” – so they’re giving notice to their West Seattle day center’s landlord (the church next door) and will start clearing out.
Family Promise is a unique nationally franchised program: Rather than operate a physical shelter, they partner with local churches who provide shelter and meals for families, while FP administration helps the families find services and look for employment – that’s where the day center comes in. It opened here in 2008. Schwamberg says they’re looking for other nonprofits that can accept the items they’ll have to clear out of the day center. The last family they’re sheltering will likely move on today; he says they’re finishing the intake process with another organization.
Last August, FP closed after running out of money, but said they would reopen if they could raise $90,000 – enough money for a half-year of operations. They got it done, and reopened in June, but that half-year is almost over, and no source of sustainable funding emerged along the way.