Interfaith Sanctuary plans major expansion

Chloe Baul//April 14, 2023

Boise Interfaith Sanctuary

Renderings provided by Interfaith Sanctuary.

Interfaith Sanctuary plans major expansion

Chloe Baul//April 14, 2023

Boise Interfaith Sanctuary
Rendering provided by Interfaith Sanctuary.

After almost two years of effort securing a Conditional Use Permit, Interfaith Sanctuary was given the green light to begin construction at the old Salvation Army building.

The homeless shelter will celebrate with a groundbreaking ceremony on Tuesday, April 18 at 10 a.m, at 4308 W. State St.

The project will take 12 to 15 months to complete and will grow from the current 30,000 square feet to 42,500 square feet with the addition of a complete second story for the family shelter building. The new shelter will include a medical dorm and hospice rooms for visitors in need of increased medical care. There will be 20 private rooms in a second building disconnected from the campus, but on the same property.

“The most important thing about this building, which is different from emergency shelters, is that anyone who’s staying at that shelter can stay day and night,” Executive Director of Interfaith Sanctuary Jodi Peterson-Stigers, said. “It doesn’t require you to check in at 5 p.m. and leave at 7 a.m. and then figure it out all day long. This building is big enough to allow all the guests to utilize the classrooms, the programming, and a dining room that can accommodate everyone…”

The upgraded shelter will include a family dining room, a single adult dining room, a day shelter for adults that has supportive services, and case management computers. It will also include a back property that allows visitors to be outside, but safe and secure, where they can’t be preyed on if they are part of a vulnerable population, Peterson-Stigers added.

Rendering provided by Interfaith Sanctuary.

“That’s the magic of this space, is giving someone a space day and night, which is the key to really improving outcomes because you’re taking all the trauma away,” she said. “It reduces the amount of negative energy you receive as a homeless person on a daily basis.”

As well as providing a safer setting for families, children and senior citizens, the new shelter location will provide more opportunities to create a meaningful experience for guests, through classrooms dedicated to recovery, mental health, art therapy, food service training and Micron workforce training. 

Interfaith Sanctuary invited members of the community to help support the project through Build HOPE, “People can buy bricks and engrave them with names or sayings to help us raise the funds for what has turned into a pretty expensive project,” she added. According to Interfaith Sanctuary: 

The main building (to house single men and women) and will include:

  • Medical Dorm with 18 beds and 2 hospice rooms 
  • Exam room and nursing station supported through a partnership with Terry Reilly Health Services and Full Circle Health
  • Mens and Women’s sleeping pods that will include single beds, storage and nightstands:
    • Men 24 singles 
    • Women 6 singles
  • Emergency shelter beds for urgent night by night need:
    • Mens 7 Bunks
    • Womens 10 bunks
  • Classrooms 
  • A full service commercial kitchen with sit down dining area and home to a Food Service Training Program
  • Day Shelter with computer library, lounge area and access to the outdoor park and recreation area
  • Guests will have 24/7 access to shelter and campus 
  • The safe outdoor setting on the backside of this property allows guests privacy as they work their way out of homelessness. 
  • Laundry facilities
  • Mail Room
  • Deescalation Room

The adjacent 2-story building will include the Family Housing Program. 

The family rooms will include:

  • Beds for up to 100 family members plus cribs for babies
  • Family privacy suites to accommodate whole family units
  • A full time preschool classroom/ children’s indoor play and activity area
  • Family dining area/lounge
  • Teen computer and activity room/lounge
  • Laundry facilities
  • Case Management Offices
  • Storage for donation items
  • 20 private rooms that offer doors with locks so guests are able to have a sense of independence and are able to keep their possessions safely stored.

Men’s and Women’s outdoor offerings:

  • Bike Storage (100+ bikes)
  • Lockers for guest’s possessions
  • A landscaped park with benches, trees and a zen garden 
  • A community garden 
  • Outside dining space
  • A safe, secure and private space

Family side outdoor offerings (separated from the adult population with a fence to provide privacy for families):

  • Children’s playground
  • Outdoor dining area
  • Green space for outdoor activities
  • Family community garden
  • Dedicated play area
  • Stroller and bike storage( located on the front side of family building)