Jan. 21—ASHLAND — An ideal marriage has Shelter of Hope back in action.
When Shelter of Hope announced it was temporarily ceasing services due to "unforeseen circumstances" as of Jan. 8, its board of directors said the group would be "working diligently to address the challenges we are facing and ensure that we can resume our services as soon as possible."
Addiction Recovery Care quickly entered the picture.
Brynn Fitzpatrick, the shelter's board chair, submitted s statement to The Daily Independent on behalf of the board. It indicated the partnership is a no-brainer.
"The Board of Directors along with the staff at Shelter of Hope have been presented with an amazing opportunity to join forces with ARC," the statement read.
The board said ARC and the shelter's vision and mission align perfectly, "enabling both parties to focus on the three E's: education, employment and empowerment."
According to Matt Brown, President of ARC Healthcare, the shelter plus ARC equals the Ashland Altogether Opportunity Center.
"It broadens our scope," Brown said. "With all (ARC has) going on, we're way more than addiction treatment now."
Ashland Mayor Matt Perkins played an integral role in pursuing a match for Shelter of Hope.
"When I became aware of the issues facing Shelter of Hope, it was of deep concern to me and the commission that the families currently in shelter not be displaced," said Perkins, referring to five families housed there. "I met with the shelter's board and was able to connect them with the good people at ARC."
Perkins said ARC "believes in the power of compassion and community, and I expect (Shelter of Hope) will offer more services than ever before by working with local partners."
Plans are in place to add capacity by renovating the facility.
"We will assume their employees, bring back the eight or nine who were laid off, and manage them," Brown said. "We will work alongside Shelter of Hope, leasing their facilities from them at fair market value and they will be serving as a landlord."
Shelter of Hope's board voted unanimously in favor of this partnership. Fitzpatrick gave Brown a tour of the facility on Friday.
"It's a partnership that is going to sustain a crucial longstanding resource in our community while expanding services and opportunities to the shelter's clients," read Shelter of Hope's statement. "When organizations and communities rally around to build each other up, we see a strong community. The path that lies ahead of us is new ground, but working together we see the importance of providing a safe and supportive environment for those who are unhoused. We are rebuilding with focus on the future, and we are incredibly grateful to have ARC by our side."
Perkins said he couldn't be more pleased with the outcome.
"I am grateful to both Tim (Robinson) and Matt (Brown) with ARC and Shelter of Hope's Board of Directors for moving quickly to continue to take care of our most vulnerable citizens," Perkins said.
"We are all in to serve Ashland and this region," Brown said.
Shelter of Hope is at 1625 Greenup Ave. in Ashland. Its phone number is (606) 324-6700.
(606) 326-2664 — email@example.com