Client John Thomas Winkler eats his dinner provided by the Emerson family of Santa Clarita at Bridge to Home on Nov. 22. Photo Tom Cruze/For the Signal

Homeless shelter to stay open for Christmas and New Year’s Day

To allow local homeless people to celebrate the holidays with a stomach full of food and a warm bed to sleep in, Santa Clarita’s homeless shelter Bridge to Home will now stay open on Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Those two days are not part of the contract for Los Angeles County shelters, but now all shelters have been permitted to stay open for guests, according to Bridge to Home’s Governing Board President Peggy Edwards.

Plenty of volunteers and staff members have signed up to serve on Christmas Day, Edwards said, and it would not have been possible to accommodate all the homeless guests without them.

“It’s a very positive thing,” Edwards said. “There is camaraderie in being with other people as we celebrate the holidays.”

Remaining open is especially important since there are very few places open for food on Christmas or New Year’s Day, Edwards said.

The services available on Christmas are a continuation of L.A. County’s efforts to serve its homeless population, according Supervisor Kathryn Barger’s Communications Deputy Tony Bell.

“On Christmas as it is every day,” Bell said, “these facilities are vital to provide shelter as well as access to supportive services, which will hopefully lead to better outcomes for homeless individuals.”

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