On June 15th, we had the pleasure of bringing together four nonprofit leaders and their respective communities to join together for our first-ever virtual panel event, Building Bridges: Honest discussions on real solutions to homelessness. In the hour-long panel discussion, the leaders discussed a wide range of topics from past lived experiences, the allocation of current resources, and calling out what it will actually take to address homelessness, just to name a few. It was a lively and candid discussion that got us fired up and ready to demand change.
At The Crossroads, along with Young Women’s Freedom Center, Hospitality House, and Homeless Youth Alliance have taken some of the questions and ideas posed from the discussion and have put together a list of various ways to stay engaged and help build a more compassionate and equitable Bay Area:
TAKE ACTION IN UNDER 5 MINUTES:
Share the video of this panel with one person in your network who might be moved or challenged by the discussion
- Bonus: Use our virtual mixer conversation starters to create a more engaging dialogue around the topic!
Sign up to receive updates from At The Crossroads, Hospitality House, the Homeless Youth Alliance, the Young Women’s Freedom Center (and other organizations doing this work) to understand the work that’s happening and how you might plugin
Saying ‘Hi’ and building strong relationships with your neighbors, both those who are unhoused and housed
- Never underestimate the power of connecting with another human being and the impact that it can make.
- Share information with housed neighbors to help build a more compassionate community.
- Check-in with your unhoused neighbors and get to know what they want and need; when possible, offer information about resources and services.
Keep track of different volunteering and assistance opportunities organizations are offering and donate/sign up!
- Homeless Youth Alliance: Volunteer with HYAs monthly community cleanups!
- Young Women’s Freedom Center: Sign on to Young Women Freedom’s Center’s Freedom 2030 Campaign
- At The Crossroads: ATC offers many ways to get involved with various donation and volunteering opportunities
- Hospitality House: Participate in Hospitality House’s Second Chance online campaign
Challenge harmful narratives!
- Track the conversation on local forums like Next Door and be a voice for compassion and truth where possible.
- Use quick fact sheets to debunk harmful myths and false narratives surrounding those experiencing homelessness.
- Share articles and other information that challenge common narratives around homelessness.
Hold local and state governments accountable
- Send a letter telling California’s decision-makers to extend the moratorium on evictions to keep people from becoming unhoused.
- Learn how the Our City, Our Home Oversight Committee is making recommendations and holding the Mayor and Board of Supervisors accountable for how money is allocated for homelessness, and ensuring transparency. You can even join these meetings yourself and speak up!
Attend community meetings: Get involved and be a force for compassion; organize your community to back local efforts that are supportive of unhoused neighbors
- The Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing holds a Local Homelessness Coordinating meeting on the first Monday of each month. Efforts are aimed at ensuring a unified homeless strategy that is supported by the Mayor, the Board of Supervisors, City departments, nonprofit agencies, and the community at large.
- Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing also has a calendar full of community meetups that range from addressing food security to mental health policy efforts. Sign up and share!
- Find your local neighborhood group (try searching on Facebook or Google) and show up to meetings/chime in online to advocate for compassionate solutions to homelessness. Here’s a short list of neighborhood groups:
Complex issues can’t be solved in silos. We challenge you to continue #BuildingBridges in our community and doing what you can (both big and small) to ensure that all of our neighbors have access to basic necessities and caring support. This is meant to be a living resource: if you have any other ideas to add to this list, please reach out to us at
[email protected] and we will make updates!