How did we get here?
In our community there was previously one centralized emergency shelter from 2007-2020 named the Community Assistance Center (CAC), off Record Street, in Reno. This shelter had 158 beds available and hosted a men’s, women’s and family shelter, a Triage Center for short-term detox and stabilization, and outreach services connecting clients with resources, operated by the non-profit organization, Volunteers of America.
In March 2020, COVID-19, the novel Coronavirus pandemic, took place and the CAC did not have the capacity to socially distance all clients. As the City of Reno served as the lead for homelessness, the City activated the Reno Events Center, as the temporary shelter space for people experiencing homelessness, prioritizing the safety of all clients, personnel, and staff. In response to this COVID-19 pandemic and emergency sheltering needs, Reno, Sparks, and Washoe County collaborated to utilize Coronavirus Relief Fund distributions for land acquisition and the development of the Nevada Cares Campus, including the Governor’s Bowl Park site acquisition.
On January 4, 2021, the project contractor, Q&D Construction, broke ground at the Nevada Cares Campus which opened to 604 clients in May 2021.
On August 30, 2021, an Interlocal Cooperative Agreement was approved for Washoe County to serve as the lead for the Nevada Cares Campus operations, the transfer of the Northern Nevada Continuum of Care and other homeless services, effective September 1, 2021. This regional effort was approved by the Reno City Council, Sparks City Council, and Board of County Commissioners. To view the meeting, click here.
What is the current state?
The Nevada Cares Campus is a housing focused campus, providing services while supporting people pursue their housing goals.
The goal of the Nevada Cares Campus is to meet people who are currently experiencing homelessness where they are at and provide housing focused case management to move these clients to stable, independent housing as soon as possible. The emergency shelter currently provides basic hygienic services including temporary restrooms, handwashing, showers, and laundry to 600 plus individuals, admitting men and couples. Single women who arrive are referred to Our Place, the local women and family shelter. In the event Our Place is full, women are welcomed at the Nevada Cares Campus emergency shelter. To address the needs of additional emergency shelter space, staff is working on offering services on campus, enriched through partnerships with local service providers and the needed staff. If interested in partnering with the Nevada Cares Campus, please contact us here.
Where are we going?
While the emergency shelter is opened and operating, the long-term development for the Campus continues. In addition to bringing services to the Campus, enhancements include improving the arrival experience to include a diversion program, appropriate case manager-to-client ratios, staff-to-client ratios, mental health support and providing alternative shelter options to meet different needs and create community. These needs will be met through improvements to the current building sprung structure and the building of permanent facilities.
To learn more about the future program model and what each construction phase entails, please visit the Program and Construction Development page, here.
Last Revised 05/23/2022
If you are interested in additional information on the Nevada Cares Campus, please contact Washoe County Housing and Homeless Services at: RegionalHomelessServices@washoecounty.gov