Mayor London Breed Announces Opening of Transitional Housing for Pregnant People and Mothers Experiencing Homelessness
Jelani House in the Bayview will provide shelter for 17 people who are pregnant or recently gave birth and are experiencing homelessness, and help clients find permanent housing
San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed today announced the opening of Jelani House, a unique transitional housing program for pregnant people and new mothers experiencing homelessness. Mayor Breed was joined by Supervisor Shamann Walton, the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing, and the Homeless Prenatal Program for a press conference and tour of the new facility. Jelani House is part of Mayor Breed’s initiative to open 1,000 new shelter beds by the end of this year.
“Jelani House is more than a facility and more than beds. It will be a place of rejuvenation and hope for our most vulnerable residents,” said Mayor Breed. “At Jelani House, guests can transition into parenthood, bond with their new babies, heal, and move forward into housing and a better life for themselves and their families.”
Jelani House is located in the Bayview, with 17 private rooms, a living room, community spaces, kitchen and dining area, and a deck and backyard. The City is leasing the building and the Homeless Prenatal Program (HPP) will operate it, providing clients with 24-hour support, including case management, health advocacy, prenatal education and parenting classes, therapy, and nutrition and cooking classes. Delivering Innovation in Supportive Housing (DISH) will provide technical assistance for HPP and Jelani House.
The average intended length of stay for residents at Jelani is approximately six months. During that time, HPP will provide one-on-one assistance to clients to help them find permanent housing as soon as they are ready to leave Jelani House.
HPP specializes in providing services to young families and homeless women with the belief that pregnancy is often a window of opportunity for families to work toward health and stability. Noting the varied challenges homeless, pregnant people often face, HPP uses an evidenced-based, trauma-informed approach to family care. HPP operates a Housing Assistance Program, which serves over 300 families per year with housing case management; limited, short-term financial assistance; and workshops that help families obtain and retain safe housing.
“This is a big win for expecting mothers and the community,” said Supervisor Walton. “Jelani House has always been a safe haven for new mothers and mothers with young children. Having the Homeless Prenatal Program working with families at Jelani House is nothing short of incredible.”
“People who are pregnant and experiencing homelessness are a very high priority,” said Jeff Kositsky, Director of the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing. “We are so grateful to everyone who made this incredibly important project come to life and that it will now become part of the many steps the City is taking to support people experiencing homelessness.”
“HPP has always believed in the benefits of a two-generational, upstream approach that invests in families,” Martha Ryan, Founder and Executive Director, Homeless Prenatal Program. “I look forward to working together to make Jelani House a model for the nation that promotes healthy birth outcomes and ends family poverty and homelessness for good.”
This January, Mayor Breed announced the next phase in the City’s efforts to address homelessness, with a goal to open at least 2,000 additional places for people experiencing homelessness over the next two years.