Camp Hope began in March 2017 in response to critical need expressed by city and county officials to alleviate the challenges of homelessness in downtown Yakima and the greater Yakima Valley. Over the summer of 2016, downtown Yakima had experienced an increase in homelessness, and an unsupervised tent encampment had popped up downtown in an abandoned lot near homes and businesses. The City of Yakima approached Transform Yakima Together for help, and the Yakima Valley Council of Governments (YVCOG) awarded us a grant to open Camp Hope. (see Homeless Shelter Plan)
Camp Hope began as an outdoor, barracks-style encampment for approximately 45 adults with 24-hour security, 3 meals a day brought in by volunteers, a shower trailer (as there was no running water), and an education center to teach life skills, literacy, and GED classes.
As winter approached, a search began for an indoor location. In November 2017, Camp Hope moved to a warehouse at 1702 Englewood Avenue, Yakima, 98902. The location operated as a day-time warming center and slept over 100 residents nightly – for men, women, and children.
In these first 9 months, Camp Hope provided 15,388 bed nights and 33,853 meals, serving 556 unique individuals (3/22/17-12/31/17).
On June 30th, 2018, Camp Hope moved back to our original camp site where we will be for 2 years.