SF’s Interfaith Winter Shelters Open Through March 26
San Francisco announced the opening of its Interfaith Winter Shelter program. Now in its 33rd year, the Interfaith Winter Shelter program opens Sunday, November 21, 2021, increasing shelter capacity for people experiencing homelessness during the particularly difficult winter season. This year, the shelter will transition among four religious facilities with meals prepared and served by multiple congregations.
“As we continue to move forward with our Homelessness Recovery Plan and create thousands of new housing placements for homeless residents, there is still the immense need for everyone to do their part to provide immediate shelter for people to go to,” said Mayor Breed. “During the difficult winter season, it is our responsibility as a city and community to ensure that everyone has a safe and warm place to sleep at night. I want to thank our local faith organizations for opening their doors and making this program possible.”
The Interfaith Winter Shelter program is a seasonal, overnight-only congregate shelter operated by Episcopal Community Services, in partnership with the San Francisco Interfaith Council and HSH, that will begin operating on the Sunday before Thanksgiving, November 21, 2021, and will extend until March 26, 2022.
The program will rotate to multiple host site locations including Canon Kip Senior Center, Saint Mary’s Cathederal, Trinity St. Peters Episcopal Church, and First Unitarian Universalist Church. Each location will have a different cot layout and capacity based on the dimensions of the space. Capacity will range from 20 to 67 cots per site. Due to COVID-19, the program will not accept any self-referrals this year. All cots will be allocated through HSH’s centralized guest placement team. Referrals will be made by SFHOT and HSOC.
The program will serve anyone in need of shelter, providing two meals a day, with dinner service mostly provided through Interfaith and coordinated volunteers.
The Interfaith Winter Shelter Program will adhere to COVID-19 public health guidance for congregate-style shelters that includes but is not limited to:
- Physical distancing of 6 feet between individuals
- Face coverings will be provided and are required to be worn by guests and staff
- Enhanced cleaning processes
- Access to handwashing and sanitation stations
- Enhanced food safety practices
ECS has been providing the services for the Interfaith Winter Shelter for the last 33 years and is funded by HSH to provide services at the 2021-2022 Interfaith Winter Shelter Program. For more information about the 2021-2022 Interfaith Winter Shelter Program, please visit: hsh.sfgov.org/services/the-homelessness-response-system/shelter/emergencyshelter/
The opening of Interfaith Winter Shelter builds on Mayor Breed’s Homelessness Recovery Plan and commitment to creating more housing and shelter for homeless residents as San Francisco emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic. Through Mayor Breed’s plan, the City will expand capacity in the Homelessness Response System and will make 6,000 placements available for people experiencing homelessness through Coordinated Entry, including 4,500 placements in Permanent Supportive Housing. Progress on Mayor Breed’s Homelessness Recovery Plan can be found here: sf.gov/data/homelessness-recovery-plan
In addition to her Homelessness Recovery Plan, Mayor Breed announced in October that the City is moving forward with establishing a Vehicle Triage Center (VTC) at the Candlestick Point State Recreation Area’s (SRA) Park Boat Launch Parking Lot. Once opened, the Candlestick VTC will include up to 150 parking spaces for up to 177 people, 24/7 staffing and security, bathrooms, mobile shower facilities, and potable water. It will provide people living in their vehicles in the immediate area with a safe place to park and live and access to services designed to help stabilize their lives through health care, housing, employment, or other interventions that meet their unique needs.
Read more at the Office of the Mayor.