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First Step Shelter, INC. Board Members Air Frustrations and Discuss Progress.

Wed, Feb 26, 2020 at 10:00AM

Written by Kristen Schmutz – Belden Communications


First Step Shelter, Inc., Board Members met yesterday for their monthly board meeting. While a lot of the discussion focused on the Shelter receiving the $160,000 Grant from the Father’s Table Foundation in Sanford to hire a Developmental Director, who will be in charge of Fundraising, other topics seemed to get some headway more than they had over the last few months.


The bed size of the facility has been expanded to now accommodate 70 beds, 25 more than the previous limit of 45, and is hopefully going to be completed by April, pending the hire of another Case Manager and Night Security Guard.


Executive Director Victoria Fahlberg also set a new fundraising goal for the year set at $800,000, which she plans to receive by hosting various types of fundraising events from Bingo Nights to Gala’s, to asking current donors to agree to monthly donations.


The only drawback is, as multiple board members say is a major frustration, is the appointment of the final authority figure over the shelter. The Catholic Charities of Central Florida and the Board have a tense understanding of who is really in charge of the facility and its general operations.


The City of Daytona Beach owns the land the facility sits on and has a say it's operations; however, the Board Members and Catholic Charities seem to be able to disagree on an appropriate chain of command.


While it seems like there is a way to go, in getting through all the roadblocks, in the short time the shelter has been open much progress has been made. Board Member Rose Ann Tornatore, who donated $250,000 to the shelter last month for the construction of the outdoor safe zone, expects the once-controversial project to be completed by the end of the summer.

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