Organizational History

Salem Arms

In the late 1980's, several churches in the West Central area formed a collaboration named West Central Community Ministries. This collaboration consisted of St. Joseph's Catholic, Salem Lutheran, West Central Baptist, St. Paul's United Methodist, Holy Trinity Episcopal, and Westminster Presbyterian Churches. This group formed a non-profit called Salem Arms, whose primary mission was to provide housing and services to those who were suffering from chronic mental illness. One of the churches, Salem Arms Lutheran, owned the group's first project; an apartment house that ministered to chronically mentally ill homeless individuals.

Spokane Community Housing Association (SCHA)

In 1989, the Baptist church owned a house needing rehabilitation. Lonnie Tortorelli, a local parole officer had  a group of parolees' in need of a community service project and they agreed to rehabilitate the house. Ms. Tortorelli subsequently worked with the pastor at Salem Lutheran Church about how best the house could be used to benefit the community. The result was that in 1991, Spokane Community Housing Association (SCHA) was born, focused on providing housing for large families with income barriers. Since then, there have been a number of homes that were donated by local churches in which SCHA rehabbed and sold to those who qualified financially.  

Salem Arms Community Housing (SACH)

Both Salem Arms and Spokane Community Housing Association (SCHA) boards of directors shared an Executive Director until 2012, when they officially merged to form what is now known as Salem Arms Community Housing (SACH).