Monday, April 25, 2016

Retail Giant Lends Motel for Homeless Shelter

Former motel in Seattle converted into homeless shelter.(Mary's place photo)


The New York Times reports(Amazon), in partnership with a nonprofit group called Mary’s Place, threw open the doors of an unused building near the heart of its (Seattle) corporate empire, creating one of the largest homeless shelters in Seattle. The 200-bed shelter is taking shape in a former Travelodge that Amazon bought in 2014, a structure that many of the company’s employees walk by every day on their way to or from work. The first handful of families who will sleep there started arriving Monday.

From Mary's Place website:

On April 18, the doors opened to the Mary’s Place Guest Rooms, an old Travelodge hotel in downtown Seattle that Amazon has provided rent-free for one year and converted to shelter for 200 family members. Filling a need in the homeless community, the Guest Rooms will also accommodate extended families and families with pets.

In response to the civil state of emergency declaration on homelessness, Amazon reached out to Seattle Mayor Ed Murray’s office to find out if their building could be used by Mary’s Place as an emergency family shelter. Construction on the facility isn’t scheduled until Spring of 2017, and Amazon saw a unique opportunity to partner with Mary’s Place to ensure that no child sleeps outside in our community.

Not only has Amazon gifted the building, but the company is also covering utilities and the costs of upgrading and converting the space. Hearing about the project, Seattle’s Fairmont Olympic Hotel donated hundreds of desks, chairs, and tables from the hotel to outfit each of the rooms.

Amazon has also partnered with Mary’s Place to provide an easy way to access our Wish List to donate supplies for the new shelter: www.amazon.com/marysplace.


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