A recent article in the Daily Inter Lake has raised some concerns as to why Sparrow’s Nest of NW MT is transitioning from a house in Whitefish to a newly renovated home in Kalispell. We, the Board of Directors of Sparrow’s Nest of NW MT, understand the community’s concerns and want to make it clear we are dedicated to our mission of ensuring safe, supportive housing for unaccompanied homeless high schools students in all areas of the Flathead Valley.
The opportunity for a home in Whitefish came about because of the generosity of St. Peter’s Lutheran church. In 2015, St. Peter’s approached Sparrow’s Nest with an idea to conditionally utilize their parsonage to support Sparrow’s Nest’s mission. At the time, Sparrow’s Nest had taken possession of a donated building in Kalispell and begun the process of raising funds to support its total renovation. When St. Peter’s approached us with their offer it gave us the opportunity to capitalize on their generosity and provide housing much sooner than anticipated, but also presented the challenge of funding the Whitefish operation and the Kalispell renovation. Over the past 3 years through the generous support of many local businesses, organizations, individual donors and volunteers we have managed to fund the operation of the Whitefish home and complete the renovation of the main floor of the Kalispell home. We plan to begin housing students for the 2018 – 2019 school year in the Kalispell home. So, why are we transitioning out of the Whitefish house? The financial realities facing Sparrow’s Nest of operating two homes. With the main floor of the Kalispell home complete, the only prudent choice is to transition to the Kalispell home. We will forever be grateful to St. Peter’s Lutheran church for their generosity which has enabled us to provide long term housing to nine students in need.
We remain committed to serving all areas throughout the Flathead Valley to the best of our ability. With an estimated unaccompanied homeless student population exceeding 300 in the Flathead Valley, Sparrow’s Nest and the Flathead Valley community will need more than one home to meet the need. Sparrow’s Nest remains committed to working with Whitefish and other Flathead Valley communities to open additional homes to address this serious issue.
The Board of Directors Sparrow’s Nest of NW MT.