San Fernando Valley-based homeless service providers celebrated the grand opening Thursday of a 10,000-square-foot facility that replaces a warehouse destroyed in a fire two years ago.
The San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission’s new warehouse stands at the site of the destroyed facility at 13422 Saticoy St., and will store items donated to the organization to help raise money for homeless services.
About half of the Rescue Missions’ budget depends on sales at its thrift store, the North Hollywood Super Thrift Store. Due to the lack of warehouse space over the past year, the Los Angeles Fire Department helped the service provider collect donations.
Councilman Paul Krekorian, who represents the area and promoted a fundraising drive for the Rescue Mission last year, said it has long “extended a helping hand to families in need of shelter and a hot meal.”
“After a fire destroyed their emergency shelter and warehouse, the community stepped up to help rescue the Rescue Mission, so they could continue their work,” he said.
Some of the 135 firefighters that responded to the fire also attended the ribbon-cutting event.
In addition to city officials, organizations like the Dodgers pitched in to help with the rebuilding process, which also resulted in the opening of a new 90-bed shelter.
The May 3, 2014, blaze — which started in pile of wooden pallets next door — gutted the mission’s emergency shelter and food pantry that was located at the warehouse, and damaged or destroyed mission-owned vehicles.
Since the fire, homelessness in the Valley has only increased, with the area experiencing a 35 percent rise in the homeless population, based on 2016 homeless count results released.
—City News Service