A program announced today whose aim is to curb the number of families experiencing homelessness will benefit from a private-public partnership that includes donations from number of tech companies and luminaries, from Zendesk CEO Mikkel Svane to Asana cofounder Dustin Moskovitz and his wife Cari Tuna to Marc Benioff of Salesforce and his wife Lynne, Venturebeat reports.
The project is called the Heading Home campaign, and in the effort, Salesforce has provided $2 million, with Benioff himself chipping in a cool $10 million. The city says that $5 additional million has been raised by private funding, excluding a funding match from the Benioffs, but Venturebeat writes that "It’s unclear how much Google.org, Svane, and Moskovitz are contributing." The Chronicle also wrote of the effort and say that Ron Conway, the Hellman Foundation, the Giants, and more have donated to it.
“In our city where so many have done so well, it’s unacceptable that 1,800 students attending San Francisco’s public schools are homeless,” Benioff remarked at a press conference today alongside Mayor Lee, his homeless director Jeff Kositsky, and SFUSD officials. “I hope that other companies and individuals will join us as we take these initial steps in helping all the homeless children in our city find permanent housing.”
Although the city already spends $35 million a year on the problem, amid budget cuts across the board as the city faces a somewhat surprise deficit according to the latest projections (here in the Chronicle), the injection of private capital will be more than welcome.
The way the campaign is said to work is that a portion of a family's rent will be paid to their landlords through the city for up to 18 months while they work with a team to find a more permanent living solution. Families won't have to prove that they're seeking or have employment or income, and in fact, there are no preconditions, meaning no sobriety or drug checks or the like.
According to the Chronicle, the number of homeless families in San Francisco has been in decline, and stands at about 1,100. That's a 20 percent drop since 2015, but officials expect at least 800 families are going to need somewhere to live next year.