Nonprofit Spotlight: HomeAid San Diego
There are people who remain to be caring about other people’s welfare, and have not been completely blinded by what the world has given them. It is a blessing indeed for the less fortunate to have these people who run such organizations that help them not only by providing food and shelter, but also in helping them stand on their own feet and provide them with hope. One of these groups is HomeAid San Diego.
HomeAid San Diego is just one of the 18 active chapters of HomeAid America that builds multi-unit shelters in 12 different states. It is a non-profit organization established in 2002 that provides temporary housing to homeless men, women, and children. The success of this organization is made possible by the joint efforts of both local building and real estate industry organizations.
HomeAid San Diego projects are developed with the support of trade partners and volunteers, along with the professional service providers by extending their help to residents to recover and realize their purpose in life.
Brief History of HomeAid America
HomeAid America was established in 1989 by its founding members, L.C. “Bob” Albertson Jr., Bart Hanson, Jay Blakslee, Tim Galvin, Julie Brinkerhoff-Jacobs, and Michael Lennon.
By 1990, HomeAid identified the first 8 projects in 8 cities in Orange County and in the same year, Kris Kristofferson helped raised $40,000 at the first HomeAid fundraiser.
In 1991, HomeAid inaugurated Project Playhouse. It is a fundraising campaign that highlighted the craftsmanship and imagination of the Southern California’s top home builders and architects. The houses were auctioned off to help support the development of shelters.
In 1992, HomeAid Los Angeles/Ventura launched Casa Pacifica, a shelter that houses abused or neglected children.
The HomeAid Orange County and HomeAid Riverside were the first official chapters that were recognized in 1995. The very first chapter outside of California was the HomeAid Chicago. A multi-family shelter was built on the former Tustin Marine Base called the Village of Hope, on the same year at the Orange County.
In 1996, HomeAid Sacramento was formed by the Building Industry of Superior California. It was in 1997 when the HomeAid Handbook was created to provide the model for HomeAid Chapter replication across the United States.
In 2000, HomeAid Dallas began operating under the Home Builder of Greater Dallas. This year has also been very significant for HomeAid America as Wells Fargo Housing Foundation enters into a three-year, $1.15 million partnership with HomeAid America to establish more HomeAid chapters.
It was in 2002 when HomeAid San Diego opened and became the 7th chapter in California. The first HomeAid Quilt is crafted from art created by children living in eight HomeAid shelter projects. HomeAid welcomed four new chapters in Colorado Springs, Houston, Southeastern Michigan, and Central Massachusetts.
In 2003, HomeAid established two new chapters in Portland, Oregon and Southern Nevada.
2004 marked a significant milestone for HomeAid as it built its 100th shelter and has served the 50.000th homeless person. Genette Eaton is named as the chief executive officer of HomeAid America.
2005 was a devastating year for people who were hit by hurricanes Rita and Katrina. HomeAid together with Ameriquest Mortgage Company and its affiliates donated $3 million.
On December 10, 2007, HomeAid opened its 22nd chapter- HomeAid New York City.
On February 27, 2008, HomeAid launched the HomeAid Wounded Veterans Program. The HomeAid® Wounded Veterans program plans to build a minimum of ten (10) facilities across the country in the next five (5) years in locations such as Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, and San Diego.
By October of the same year, HomeAid reached the 100,000th-homeless-person-served milestone and opened its 170th homeless housing facility.
Who Benefits from HomeAid San Diego
Homeless individuals back then referred to people regularly seen living in the streets due to lack of a home. But now, the term homeless is referred to people who may have been displaced intentionally or unintentionally from their homes due to several circumstances, such as:
- Domestic violence
- Lack of job
- Neglected children
- Disabled/senior citizens
- Young mothers (due to unwanted pregnancy)
All these people are willingly supported by HomeAid San Diego to hopefully end homelessness.
Through pure dedication to helping end homelessness, HomeAid created various projects that will help homeless men, women, and children to have the opportunity to regain their life and become confident and comfortable to live their lives better.
Some of their projects are:
Maternity Shelter Project and Thrift Store
This project has been a collaboration between HomeAid San Diego and Home Start for the past four years, and is continuously creating housing for young mothers ages 18-23 along with their dependent children. The Thrift Store was created for young mothers to have an opportunity for a retail job as well as to receive financial literacy training. This was made possible through the Lennar Charitable Housing Foundation together with the donation from Pardee homes.
San Diego Youth Services
This serves homeless youth, and is made possible through the joint efforts of HomeAid San Diego and the San Diego Youth Services.
Polinsky’s Children’s Center and Promises2Kids
HomeAid San Diego partnered with Promises2Kids and Polinsky’s Children Center to provide a facility for children where they undergo initial medical and mental assessment.
This is managed by the Alpha Project wherein they provide shelter for the homeless with the intention of making them feel like living in a home-like facility instead of a temporary shelter.
Life Spring House
This facility was created to house emancipated foster youths.
Casa Kids Campus
Casa de Amparo provides emergency shelter and cares for children who were taken into custody due to abuse, abandonment or neglect. The site will house three residential cottage duplexes and a child services center that will house two school rooms, counseling offices, recreational and meeting rooms, administration offices and apartments for emancipated foster youth.
Veteran’s Transitional Housing
It is an existing apartment at the Oceanside, California that provides transitional housing for up to 72 veterans. The veterans are recommended to complete a program that is designed to will help them to become more independent, self-sufficient, and part of the mainstream society.
This is a facility dedicated to mothers who have experienced domestic violence, completed substance abuse programs and is currently enrolled in court-ordered family reunification programs.
The continuous effort by HomeAid San Diego and its partners is a positive indication that there are still people who are very much willing to serve others without asking anything in return. Seeing homeless individuals regain their strength and discover their identity in the society should be reason enough to help them out.