Although Asheville has numerous shelters for the homeless population, its organizers say this particular shelter fills gaps in the city’s current system. “The focus is on intact families,” explains shelter worker Gene Ettison.
The Winter Safe Shelter program at Asheville Primary School, as explained by Counterflow Asheville, will prioritize families, LGBTQ people and residents who are Black, Indigenous or people of color. The shelter plans to operate nightly through the end of March, housing up to 10 people per night with space for another 10 support staff on site.
Asheville City Schools still needs to fill about 50 positions for the school year that starts Monday, Aug. 29. With only 18 of 29 ACS bus routes staffed to roll, some of the system’s youngest students may need to board the bus as early as 6:45 a.m.