Coalition of Homeless Services Providers
Martinez Hall, 220 12th Street
Marina, CA 93933
Phone: (831) 883-3080
Fax: (831) 883-3085
The Coalition of Homeless Services Providers is a group of private non-profit and public organizations working together to address the complex issues of homelessness.
"Eliminate homelessness in Monterey and San Benito Counties by promoting interagency coordination to develop and sustain a comprehensive system of housing and services designed to maximize the self-sufficiency of individuals and families."
In 1994, the closure of the Fort Ord military base presented a unique opportunity that led to the creation of the Coalition of Homeless Services Providers. The CHSP is a 501(c)(3) Corporation formed in 1994. Its primary purpose was to collaboratively address the issues of homelessness in Monterey County by accessing former Fort Ord military surplus properties under the Stewart B. McKinney Act. This vision was accomplished over the next five years by assisting the 11 original member organizations to acquire significant funding and access housing and related buildings to serve as transitional housing programs. Today, the CHSP continues to assist member agencies in developing and sustaining these properties as opportunities become available through the master leasing or resale process. The CHSP now includes 11 members, three associate members and seven community advisors.
Other CHSP’s commitments now include countywide strategic planning and coordination of homeless services. The Coalition is the County’s designated Continuum of Care (CoC) Coordinator. A CoC represents the totality of services and housing available to individuals and families in crisis within a defined region. Part of the Coalition’s role within the CoC is to assess gaps in service and develop programs, creating a web of services that leaves no local need unmet. CHSP has demonstrated critical leadership in developing collaborative programs serving the homeless. CoC member agencies provide the continuum of services such as transitional housing, emergency shelter, street outreach and referral, child care, case management, life skills/employment training, drug and alcohol recovery counseling, youth programs, food distribution and counseling to assist families to become self-reliant. Meanwhile, our office works with member agencies and others to ensure these services continue to be available and to create new services where a need becomes prevalent.
Who we serve:
The CHSP and its agency members serve low-income and homeless individuals and families of all races and ethnicities throughout Monterey and San Benito Counties.
Homeless individuals in Monterey and San Benitto Counties may suffer from a range of debilitating conditions including mental illness, substance abuse problems, HIV/AIDS. Other subpopulations include the chronically homeless, veterans, victims of domestic violence, and unaccompanied youth. Homelessness issues affecting men, women, families, are addressed through CHSP’s unique collaborative model, which provides invaluable service referral to clients requiring multiple services inaccessible through a single provider.
What does all that mean?
You might be asking yourself how the the Coalition's activities help the average homeless person. To explain: if stakeholders are working together, more is accomplished than if they were working independently of one-another. The following example illustrates perfectly the importance of a Continuum of Care and what it translates into on the ground:
"Maria has been living on the streets for three years. She is unable to hold down a job because of the voices in her head, so she trades her body for a place to sleep and a couple of dollars to eat on."
Through Coalition member agency programs, Maria has access to mental health professionals who can treat her schizophrenia. She is also able to enter into a “housing first” program designed to meet her immediate shelter related concerns. Another member agency will address the underlying issues related to HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infection risk. And another will take on the challenges associated with education and job related barriers. By working together as a cohesive team, Maria has the best chance of becoming self-sufficient.