After two years of tireless work, St. Andrew’s Family Shelter will be opening later this month. Please join us in celebrating with our neighbors on June 24th at 2 p.m. at St. Genevieve’s Catholic Church (14383 Forest Blvd. N. in Hugo, near Hwy 61 and Frenchman Rd.). Information on volunteering can be found here.

Also, please check out the excellent story featured recently in the Quad City Press for more details on the impact that this project is expected to have in addressing critical housing needs in Hugo and nearby communities.

“These are their neighbors; these aren’t people coming from St. Paul. They love their community and they want to stay in their community, but for whatever reason housing has become unaffordable for them,” (Community Resource Center Director Jenny) Mason explained. “When we have people who are looking for housing, they mostly end up all the way in Forest Lake or Cottage Grove. These will mostly be people whose children are in the White Bear or Forest Lake schools.” 

Mason knows many residents are surprised to learn that homelessness is a problem in Washington County. Collectively, in the six school districts served by St. Andrew’s in Washington County and parts of suburban Ramsey County, there are more than 900 homeless and highly mobile students (a designation assigned by the schools to primarily track transportation and social service needs of the students), Mason noted. In the four school districts that serve the Hugo area, numbers of homeless and highly mobile students are distributed as follows: White Bear Lake, 160; Forest Lake, 78; Stillwater, 50; and Mahtomedi, 28.

St. Andrew’s received just over $165,000 in support from the Community Development Block Grant program, which the CDA administers on behalf of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. We are pleased to have played a part in supporting such a meaningful and worthwhile endeavor. Information on our CDBG efforts, including how communities and organizations can apply for assistance, can be found here.