By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
The east side of Myers Way is being resettled by unauthorized campers, for the first time since last fall’s major sweep, the Camp Second Chance Community Advisory Committee heard today.
While that side of Myers Way is not part of the camp, nor is it an official part of the CAC’s scope, it’s a frequent topic at the committee meetings.
Chair Willow Fulton, who lives near C2C, was first to mention it during the Sunday afternoon meeting.
She reported “a few more campers and more dumping” along Myers Way near the camp. She found some recently dumped items and plans to report to the city via Find It, Fix It. The items included used motor oil. Meantime, she also noted that a recent community cleanup along the roadside netted only one needle.
The increase in greenbelt camping across Myers Way also was noted by Chris Brand, CSC co-founder, who was at the meeting in place of camp manager Eric Davis. He said they’ve noticed “about 20 people” camping there and that the number’s growing.
Brand also presented the monthly C2C update:
The camp update also lauded the newest case manager assigned to C2C by the encampment’s city-contracted operator, LIHI, Billy Jean. Brand said eight people are leaving C2C or permanent housing this month, and that four people have found jobs with LIHI’s help.
CAC member Cinda Stenger from Alki UCC and Sound Foundations Northwest – the nonprofit that’s been building donor-funded tiny houses at C2C – noted that the final structures, to replace the “overnight test,” are in the works. She said the White Center Community Development Association donated $6,000 to pay for those two structures.
CAC member Grace Stiller is checking on reports of poisonous weeds at the site.
Shawn Neal from the city’s Human Services Department, the lone city rep present, said he had just visited the camp and talked with the new case manager. No city updates otherwise.
No community concerns were voiced during the meeting, which lasted less than half an hour. But committee members had some questions.
What happens when a camper moves out? Brand said they contact people on the waiting list. Prospective campers come in and spend two or three nights and “if they are a good fit” they take it from there.
What happens to people when they move out? Former C2C resident Zsa Zsa, now housed, was at the meeting and said she’s moved and things are going well. But she also spoke of another former resident who is elderly and hearing-challenged and has housing on Lake City Way but would like to visit his friends at the camp if he can get help fixing his car.
As for the camp’s status, midway through the six-month extension announced by the city in March – no official news on the potential faith-organization sponsorship mentioned last month, though an unidentified potential sponsor has visited the camp. LIHI would still be the service provider and nothing else would change except that “instead of the city holding the lease on the property, the faith group would hold the lease,” as Fulton explained it. Conversations continue.
NEXT MEETING: 2 pm Sunday, August 4th, Arrowhead Gardens (9200 2nd SW) community room.