You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.

Schenectady Shelter Closing Today

ALBANY, NY (March 9, 2015) – After housing more than a dozen people for three nights following a massive fire in Schenectady, the American Red Cross will close its emergency shelter at Christ Church, 970 State Street, today at 5:00 P.M. The Department of Social Services, in coordination with multiple community partners including Bethesda House and the Salvation Army, has identified alternate housing for those displaced by Friday’s fire, and will offer individualized service planning as people continue to recover.

“We know that there is a long road ahead for the people we’ve served over the last few days,” said Gary Striar, CEO of the American Red Cross Eastern New York Region. “Our staff, volunteers and many partners have worked hard to meet people’s most immediate needs, and we look forward to continued collaboration to ensure that people can move forward and recover fully from this fire.”

Red Cross workers opened the shelter at Christ Church around 7:00 A.M. on Friday morning to provide victims of the devastating fire on Jay Street with a safe place to stay. Throughout the weekend, the Red Cross served more than 600 meals and snacks, provided more than 100 health and mental health service contacts, and opened 42 cases to help individuals and families begin the recovery process. Despite the shelter closing, Red Cross caseworkers and other volunteers will remain available to aid clients in the coming days.

A total of 57 Red Cross workers, primarily volunteers, lent their support to this relief operation. To learn more about how to get involved with disaster response efforts in the future, or to browse current volunteer opportunities with the American Red Cross, visit

You can help people affected by disasters like the Jay Street fire and countless other crises by making a gift to American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. To donate, visit or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.

MVP Health Care has committed to match donations to American Red Cross Disaster Relief until Friday, March 13, up to a total of $5,000. To have your donation matched, visit or send a check to the American Red Cross of Northeastern New York, 33 Everett Road, Albany, NY 12205 with “MVP Match” printed in the memo line.

The Salvation Army is continuing to accept donated items for victims of the Jay Street fire. Items may be dropped off at the Salvation Army, located at 222 Lafayette Street in Schenectady. Anyone with questions about such donations should call (518) 728-1079.


About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit