San Diego

More Than 200 Homeless Women, Children Move Into Shelters

More than 200 women and children moved into new homeless shelters in Golden Hill Monday.

The move is part of the city's response to combatting the deadly Hepatitis A outbreak which has killed 17 people and infected 481.

"This is going to be a safe, clean, secure place for folks to get off the street and into an environment that helps them get the support they need," said San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer.

It's being operated by the non-profit Alpha Project.

"It's a blessing. It's a challenge like it always is, but it's a lot of fun to see people who were outside this morning, will be inside now," said Bob McElroy, President of Alpha Project.

The shelters, which have restrooms, showers, and hand washing stations, are located in the parking lot of the City Operations Yard, just south of the Balboa Park Golf Course. 

There is 24-hour security by SDPD. San Diego County nurses are also offering Hepatitis A vaccinations.

Sheryl Blue said she has been living on the streets for seven years after her divorce. For her, this is a moment she feels that she'll never forget.

"I think there's going to be a major change in my life, and probably I'm going to have my own little place," Blue said. "That's all I want is a little place."

Neighbors like Carmela Harpel told NBC 7, she was reluctant to the idea but as the homeless population grows, her opinion has now changed.

"I actually think it is a good thing to do in order to prevent the Hepatitis spread in the city so whatever we can do," said Harpel.

The site will be paid for with both public and private money.

The camp will be open for up to 90 days while the city works to install larger shelters in downtown, Barrio Logan, and the Midway District.

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