Bridge of Hope

Center for Women and Children

Every night, an alarming number of men, women, boys and girls are turned away from shelters across the Bay Area. Since the advent of the Great Recession, we have seen the homeless population grow significantly. Just between July 2010 and June 2011, over 88,202 people were identified as the newly homeless within the 9 counties of the San Francisco Bay Area.

For many years, homelessness was seen as largely a male issue but today women and children are the fastest-growing demographics among the homeless in America. In the Bay Area, more than 180,000 men, women and children are homeless and we have seen an increase in the number of women and children who seek our help.

Homeless Chart

Women and children are a particularly vulnerable population. Domestic abuse, unemployment/under-employment, addictive behaviors and lack of affordable housing are some of the issues that lead to homelessness for women and children.

Last year we were forced to turn away 3,520 women and children seeking shelter and we may have been their last hope. Just one night on the street increases the likelihood that a homeless woman or child will be sexually assaulted or fall victim to other violent crimes.

Women face great danger when homeless

As a society, we can no longer continue to merely manage homelessness, or remain idle as members of our communities struggle. We need to greatly alleviate homelessness by freeing those caught in its perpetual downward pull.

Sadly, our current facility is stretched beyond its capacity to help all who come to us in need - and the needs have never been greater. Last year we were at capacity 341 nights of the year.

This is why we are asking the community to join with us to build the Bridge of Hope Center for Women and Children. This new facility will significantly increase the number of people we are able to serve, particularly women and children, who desperately need our help.

Donations Chart

In 1965, the Bay Area Rescue Mission had 12 beds and served 35 meals each day. In 2012, the Mission provided 87,500 nights of shelter and more than 1,325,000 meals. Currently we have 150 shelter beds for homeless single women and women with children. Of those, 32 beds are for emergency shelter and 118 beds are for long-term recovery.

In 2011 alone, in addition to thousands of men we helped, we rescued more than 2,000 women and children. Over a span of 12 years from 2000-2012, our programs have maintained an 81% success rate.

Donations Chart

History has proven the success of the Bay Area Rescue Mission’s finely-tuned, comprehensive and integrated services and programs. Our graduates are having a positive impact on others and their communities.

Through the Bridge of Hope Project more women and children will not only discover a place of peace in which to renew and revitalize their lives, but will also learn critical skills needed to break the cycle of homelessness.

We cannot build the Bridge of Hope Center for Women and Children alone. With your help, we can make this vision a reality. We need to draw upon the resources, wisdom and compassion of our entire community.

The proposed new facilities to be constructed