Ashland Interfaith homeless center will close

The Interfaith Care Community-Ashland, a homeless center near the town's Shop 'n' Kart store, will close its doors for good on Wednesday.

Sharon Schreiber, director of Interfaith Care Community-Medford, which oversees and partially funds the Ashland center, said the board of directors voted unanimously last month to shutter the center.

"I do feel bad about this," she said. "I started in Ashland, and I've worked for 15 years to keep that facility open. But we didn't think iti was prudent or ethical to spend so much in Ashland when the funding is supposed to be spent countywide."

Schreiber said that with the current nationwide economic downturn, she's seeing more Medford families who are on the brink of homelessness.

"These people need emergency rental and utility assistance," she said. "In Ashland, there are such a limited number of people who are homeless and willing to change their situations. Most are looking for ways to subsidize a lifestyle they have chosen."

She said the center offers housing and job assistance programs, but a majority of the people who use the center weren't taking advantage of those programs.

The Ashland center serves about 200 people weekly and provides showers, laundry, Internet, telephone and mail service, the office manager has said.

— Ashland Daily Tidings

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