Housing First Donations?
September 23, 2011 9:02 PM   Subscribe

I'd like to start giving regularly to a human services program that practices the Housing First model. Ordinarily, I'd be looking to keep my money local, but I just moved to Seattle, and the city claims to have a good record on HF, plus I can't find any non-governmental orgs doing work here. What housing first program in a major US city most needs the money?

Possible metrics here include, but aren't limited too: most effective housing first organization, city with the shittiest policies regarding housing and homelessness, organization with the greatest opportunity to make big impact per dollar. Thanks!
posted by Apropos of Something to Work & Money (4 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: DESC runs 1811 Eastlake, right there in Seattle, if you do actually want an NGO that's doing the work there. They are the real thing, when it comes to Housing First.

I can also suggest NGOs in San Francisco, but it's a city with relatively decent policies on housing and Housing First, relatively being the key word there.

Thank you for supporting Housing First.
posted by gingerbeer at 10:47 PM on September 23, 2011

Although I haven't done a lot of research on this organization, I believe they are doing great work. Not based in one city, but rather it's a national organization. Might be worth taking a look at.

100,000 Homes

Seconding the thanks for supporting Housing First.
posted by aelish at 6:37 AM on September 24, 2011

Los Angeles is the homeless capital of the Country-over 50,000 people living on the streets on any given night. They have also been recently named the "meanest" city for their policies against the homeless, basically criminalizing homeless people for sleeping in their cars and other things they have to do to get by. If you look on the website for the United Way of Greater Los Angeles, you will find a list of their partners. All of the housing organizations they fund should be using the housing first model, as that is what their request for proposal required.
posted by parkerposey at 7:40 AM on September 24, 2011

I can at least help with your two numbers-based metrics, because Charity Navigator focuses on this metric. On a pie chart where each dollar spent comprises of three components - programs, administration, and fundraising - you want the most possible money spent on programs.

There are 45 four-star homeless-services organizations listed across the country when I search Charity Navigator. Perhaps you could compare their locations to determine what geographic focus you'd like... ? Also, you can click through these to show which ones get government funding and which ones don't.

Hope that helps!

I'd also like to note a caveat that I'm not impressed with "100,000 Homes" - their website actually has a lot of lorem ipsum on it, and it is extremely hard to navigate to figure out their charity status and effectiveness. As it turns out, it's not an actual charity - it is a subset of a larger charity behemoth called Common Ground, which is based in NYC, and after looking at their 990, I'm not convinced that they're what you're looking for.
posted by juniperesque at 8:32 AM on September 24, 2011

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