SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Donations were sought Monday to keep a San Diego facility, that gives the downtown homeless a secure place to store their property, open past June when its funding is set to run out.

City Councilman Todd Gloria and Rick Gentry, president and chief executive officer of the San Diego Housing Commission, called for donations to the Water Man Check-in Center. The idea for the center was developed by homeless advocate "Water Man" David Ross, who got his nickname while handing out water to homeless people on the street.

The Water Man Check-in Center opened at 917 Ninth Ave. early last year and has since been credited for improving the conditions on San Diego's streets, according to an aide to Gloria.

"The Check-in Center keeps the possessions of out homeless neighbors safe, while helping keep San Diego's streets clean," said Gloria.

The City Council allocated $45,000 of Community Projects, Programs and Services funds in January to keep the center open through the end of June, the aide said.

The San Diego Housing Commission administers and manages the center and its daily operations are run by Gerry Limpic along with Ross.

"With their belongings secure, homeless people can freely look for jobs, work, and in a short time get off the streets," Limpic said. "In our first year we've seen over 100 homeless people re-enter society as productive citizens."

Donations can be sent to The San Diego Housing Commission -- Check-in Center, Attn: Finance Department, 1122 Broadway, Suite 300, Fifth Floor, San Diego, Calif. 92101.