Mayor Kim Driscoll, comparing the old shelter with the new, struck the same theme.
“To see what we have here — programs, offerings, a real path for folks — and that’s all due to your commitment,” she said to Oliver.
In addition to housing the homeless in its own apartment buildings, the 34-bed shelter (52 in winter) serves more than 225 meals a day, and offers case management and other services to help residents find permanent housing. It also has run programs on everything from anger management to knitting. Recently, clients have been earning college credits through Salem State University.
Oliver, who is still on the shelter board, thanked the organization for the honor and indicated he and they aren’t done yet.
“It has been a wonderful journey,” he said. “It isn’t finished.”
Tom Dalton can be reached at email@example.com.