Mayor London Breed Announces Winter Shelter Schedule
The Winter Shelter Program will operate from November 24th through March 28th, providing additional shelter services to people experiencing homelessness during the winter months
San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed, the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing (HSH), the San Francisco Interfaith Council, and Episcopal Community Services (ECS) today announced the schedule for the Winter Shelter Program and shelter site locations. The program will run from Sunday, November 24, 2019 through Saturday, March 28, 2020.
Now in its 31st year, the City and ECS have collaborated with the San Francisco Interfaith Council to provide additional shelter services to homeless San Franciscans during the winter months.
“The winter can be particularly difficult for people experiencing homelessness, which is why the Winter Shelter Program is so important,” said Mayor Breed. “It is our responsibility as a City to make sure that everyone has a safe place to sleep at night. We are grateful to our local faith organizations for opening their doors and making this program possible. Along with providing additional shelter for the winter months, I am committed to opening 1,000 new shelter beds throughout San Francisco by the end of next year.”
Winter Shelter Program spaces are reserved on a first-come, first-served basis each Sunday starting next week on November 24th. The reservation ticket will allow the guest a seven-night stay. Two meals will be served to shelter guests each night. Those interested in a sleeping space on November 24th can go to Canon Kip Senior Center, 705 Natoma Street, at 6:00 pm, 30 minutes prior to the opening of the Winter Shelter Program to receive a ticket. These spaces are not reserved through the regular adult emergency shelter reservation system.
“Interfaith councils are naturally born out of response to local crises. The San Francisco Interfaith Council is no exception,” said Michael Pappas, Executive Director, San Francisco Interfaith Council. “The Interfaith Winter Shelter has annually hosted sixty to one hundred homeless men from the Sunday before Thanksgiving through the end of March. We are particularly grateful to our chief collaborating partner Episcopal Community Services for administering this critical City program, our host sites, St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption, First Unitarian Universalist Society of San Francisco and ECS’ Canon Kip Senior Facility, as well as the fifty-five congregations and affiliated organizations that prepare and serve meals, and the Night Ministry, which serves as adjunct on-site staff. At a time when San Francisco is calling for a City-wide response addressing the needs of homelessness in our midst, the Interfaith Winter Shelter distinguishes itself as a proven model, where those served feel safe, respected and enjoy lovingly prepared and served home-cooked meals.”
ECS is funded by HSH to provide the operational staff that sets up, manages and takes down the shelter every day in the host churches. The Interfaith Council works to identify the four host churches where the overnight shelter is located and to identify the church groups, congregations and community groups that sign up to provide the evening meals throughout the program.
“The Interfaith Winter Shelter Program plays a vital role in providing shelter for people experiencing homelessness during the winter months, particularly those who are unsheltered and vulnerable to exposure-related illnesses. Episcopal Community Services is proud to continue to offer our operational expertise to support it, including hosting the shelter at our Canon Kip Senior Center,” says Beth Stokes, Executive Director, Episcopal Community Services. “This year, Winter Shelter guests will have the option to engage with Problem Solvers, who take an innovative, highly personalized approach to help people experiencing homelessness find creative solutions and pathways to housing. Engaging with guests at the Winter Shelter is a key first step to bringing individuals experiencing homelessness inside, off the streets, and near the critical health services they need to stabilize and move into permanent housing.”
The Winter Shelter Program increases HSH’s sheltering capacity by 5% to 8% on any given night throughout the winter, not including Navigation Centers. During the winter, shelter need increases with the colder, wetter weather. The regular adult emergency shelter program which expands during wet and cold weather will operate parallel to the Winter Shelter Program. Access information is available on HSH’s website, shelter reservation and resource center sites, and by calling 311.
“I would like to thank the SF Interfaith Council, Episcopal Community Services and the faith community for coming together, yet again, to provide shelter and warm meals each night this winter,” said Jeff Kositsky, Director of the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing. “Through this partnership we’re better able to meet the increased need for shelter as the temperature dips and the nights get longer; in addition to the safe places provided, the program also offers each guest dignity, warm meals and connection to the City’s larger Homelessness Response System.”
This effort is in addition to Mayor Breed’s plan to open 1,000 shelter beds by the end of next year, the largest expansion in San Francisco in the last 31 years. The City has added 366 new shelter beds toward that goal, with an additional 244 beds under construction and 200 beds in the pipeline.
For more information about the Winter Shelter Program and HSH’s Emergency Shelter Programs please visit: http://hsh.sfgov.org/services/emergencyshelter/
Winter Shelter Schedule for Single Adult Men:
Canon Kip Senior Center, capacity 40 men
705 Natoma Street
November 24 through December 21, and March 1 through March 28
Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption, capacity 100 men
1111 Gough Street
December 22 through January 18
St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, capacity 65 men
1031 Franklin Street
January 19 through February 8
First Unitarian Universalist Society, capacity 70 men
1187 Franklin Street
February 9 through February 29