After 40 years of offering drug and alcohol treatment at Point Woronzof, the Salvation Army is moving its Clitheroe Center to Midtown.

Major Mike Dickinson said the move will be a cost-saving measure since the Salvation Army leases the city-owned building at Point Woronzof and the program will shift to two buildings the Salvation Army already owns. Dickinson said it will also allow them to offer more beds for treatment.

"What we are going to be able to do is increase to 60 beds for men-only in this facility, and then we are going to open a new facility for women-only, and that will be between 12 and 15 beds," said Dickinson. "So, we are able to go from currently, 42 beds, to 72 beds for the Clitheroe program."

Dickinson said the men's program will move to a Midtown location that currently houses the Salvation Army's Adult Rehabilitative Center, a long-term rehab program that will end when Clitheroe moves in. That is projected to happen in mid-fall. A women's treatment program will move into a building on the campus of the McKinnell House Shelter, also operated by the Salvation Army, in early summer.

Nancy Burke, Anchorage's homeless coordinator, said news that the Salvation Army didn't want to renew their yearly lease at Point Woronzoff came as a bit of a surprise, but the city supports more treatment options.

"We want to support all of those treatment providers-- especially now with the growing need," said Burke.

Burke said the city has plans to tear down the building and build a new, larger treatment center at Port Woronzof, and, if funding permits, eventually build an entire "wellness center" at the site. But, that project is still several years down the road, and Dickinson said the Salvation Army wanted to expand treatment beds sooner.


The Salvation Army is also cutting costs by closing its thrift store in Eagle River. The store has only been open for about a year, but Major Mike Dickinson said the location is losing money and will close on June 16. Dickinson said employees will be encouraged to apply for other open positions within the Salvation Army.

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