Whitefish Community Foundation Awards $30,000 Emergency Grant to Flathead Warming Center

The funds will help replace a leaking roof at the 40-bed emergency shelter

By Maggie Dresser
Flathead Warming Center under construction on Oct. 13, 2021. The center will open later in the month. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon

The Flathead Warming Center has been awarded a $30,000 emergency grant from the Whitefish Community Foundation to replace its roof after it began failing last month, according to a Whitefish Community Foundation press release.

The leaking roof was deemed irreparable in February and its estimated cost is $42,000 to replace. The grant allowed crews to begin work on the roof replacement but warming center officials continue to accept cash donations.

Last December, the warming center’s new permanent location, which has 40 emergency beds, on Meridian Road in Kalispell opened its doors after serving homeless populations at two temporary locations for the past two years, including at Faith Free Lutheran Church and Christ Episcopal Church.

Flathead Warming Center Executive Director Tonya Horn said in February that staff was regularly turning away people each night.

Separately, the community foundation awarded a $45,000 emergency grant to the Samaritan House in January for the deployment of a temporary shelter to assist individuals and families who were displaced by the closure of the Fairbridge Inn and Suites in Kalispell.

Since 2000, Whitefish Community Foundation has awarded $334,200 from the Community Emergency Response fund to nonprofits in the Flathead Valley.