Shade Tree suspends program, will lose 160 beds - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Shade Tree suspends program, will lose 160 beds

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The Shade Tree cuts a program that will eliminate 160 beds (FOX5). The Shade Tree cuts a program that will eliminate 160 beds (FOX5).

The largest shelter in Nevada for abused or homeless women and children will be shutting down one of its most important programs by the end of August.

Stacey Lockhart, the new executive director of Shade Tree, said the non-profit's emergency shelter will still allow women and children to stay for up to 90 days. The transition program, which was designed for people who need longer than 90 days, will be suspended "for the foreseeable future" due to funding issues.

Approximately 40 women are a part of the program, but losing it will cost the shelter 160 beds.

One woman, who didn't want her name or face to be publicly broadcast, said she already has had enough to worry about these past few months.

"I ended up getting beat up and I came in with two black eyes," she said. "I'm 25 percent deaf in my right ear. Still trying to get that back. I've been at the Shade Tree since the end of February."

The domestic violence victim said she's thankful that the Shade Tree has been able to give her meals and shelter, but now she's afraid she's going to be thrown out on the streets. The former bank teller said she has no income even though she has been going to job interviews for months. 

"Are they really going to help us try to find places to go, or are they just expecting us to just end up on the streets?" she asked. "Mentally, it's hard. It really is."

Lockhart, who has only been executive director for less than a month, said Shade Tree hasn't been able to secure the same amount of federal funding compared to years past. She said she isn't sure how much money the shelter has lost compared to the year before, but it will focus on private fundraising in an attempt to make up the difference

"It's very important," Lockhart said. "It was not an easy decision for us to make to take the program offline for now. We're not going to turn anyone out on the street without somewhere to go."

Lockhart said the shelter would like to eventually expand and open up a second location, but not before reinstating this program. Shade Tree is launching a kindness campaign for those who would like to help. Donations can be made here.

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