A Key to a Locker Is Key to Success for Housing Program

Staff from the USC Medical Team and the Western Region Multidisciplinary Team visit the storage lockers at All Saints Church as part of the Safe Haven Bridge to Housing program.

With its new Safe Haven Bridge to Housing program, All Saints Church now serves as the site for a unique housing model that shelters homeless individuals safely on its campus. A Pasadena Community Foundation (PCF) COVID-19 Response Fund grant helped to add a critical component to the program: storage lockers for participants.

Beginning in March, Pasadena’s shelters had to reduce their capacities by 75% due to the pandemic. To assist several unhoused individuals who began living on their campus during this time, All Saints staff partnered with Union Station Homeless Services (USHS) to create the innovative and collaborative Safe Haven Bridge to Housing program. It follows the “housing first model,” recognized nationally as the most successful intervention for ameliorating the condition of homelessness. All Saints can support up to 12 participants, and these clients are supported with outreach workers, care coordinators, and additional staff from USHS and the City of Pasadena HOPE Team.

PCF Grant Amplifies the Program

PCF’s $25,000 grant helped All Saints install storage lockers for participants to keep essential belongings. As Kate Clavijo, PCF’s Senior Program Officer, points out, “A locker may seem like a small thing to some people, but it can be a critical first step in helping people obtain housing and income. Lockers not only provide a secure place for documents, clothes, cellphones, and keepsakes, but they also serve as the point of contact location for people to meet with outreach workers.”

Moreover, locker storage also has a practical benefit for All Saints: They keep the campus free of personal belongings from 7:00am-10:00pm and enable staff to identify and remove anything on campus that does not belong to Safe Haven participants.

Sally Howard, All Saints’ Associate Rector, reports that this broad partnership has proven hugely successful, with 11 clients currently enrolled and four who are in the final stages toward sustained, permanent housing. Howard recognizes PCF’s important contribution when she states “PCF’s immediate responsiveness and financial support let our church community know that offering a safe haven bridge to housing was within our reach, and it signaled to the larger community and city that we can innovate together to make a difference in the lives of those suffering from the condition of homelessness.”

To learn more about Safe Haven Bridge to Housing program, visit All Saints Church.