The Shade Tree was established in 1989 as Jubilee Ministries and, at the time, had little more to offer than safety, shelter, and cots in the basement of Saint Luke’s Episcopal Church. In 1990, diocese members, Junior League of Las Vegas, and the City of Las Vegas collaborated to establish a permanent shelter. In December of that year, The Shade Tree opened in a building owned by Catholic Charities.
Within ten years, The Shade Tree had far outgrown this first building. Programs and services that were truly helping women attain self-reliance were taxing the old building. To address these growing pains, Donald W. Reynolds Foundation made a dream come true with a $5 million dollar capital grant to build a new facility at the corner of Owens and Main Street.
The Shade Tree is the largest shelter of its kind in the state and is the only 24-hour accessible shelter designed specifically to meet the needs of women and children in Southern Nevada. With 364 permanent beds, The Shade Tree provides over 100,000 nights of shelter each year. On average, 33% of our clients are children under the age of 18. Senior citizens represent the fastest growing segment of our population.
The upper floors of our 38,000 square foot facility are residential areas with sleeping rooms, libraries, training rooms, restrooms, and children’s playrooms. The main floor has our “Dayroom,” kitchen, laundry, restrooms and showers, and services for victims of violence. The full basement is used for storing donations and shelter supplies. The Shade Tree is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. We are a local ‘grassroots’ agency with no national affiliation or support.