DELANCEY STREET FOUNDATION

Rating: 4.35 stars   26 reviews

Issues: Job Training

Location: 600 Embarcadero St San Francisco CA 94107 USA

Mission: The mission of the Delancey Street Foundation is to reverse the debilitating effects of generational poverty, teach non-violence, rehabilitate criminals and substance abusers and move people into economic self-sufficiency; to build a residential educational community which is self-governed and to teach academic and vocational skills, interpersonal and social skills, personal awareness, values and habits to establish a life of integrity and purpose in the mainstream of society drug-free and crime-free, successfully and legitimately.
Results: In 1971 Delancey Street began with 4 residents, a thousand dollar loan, and a dream to develop a new model to turn around the lives of substance abusers, former felons, and others who have hit bottom by empowering the people with the problems to become their own solution. Thirty-seven years later we remain true to our mission. We have been taking in as residents representatives of our society’s most serious social problems and, by a process of each one helping another, with no professionals, no government funding, and at no charge to the clients, we have been solving these problems: generations of poverty, illiteracy, lack of job skills, hardcore substance abuse, homelessness, repeat felons, gang members, teen pregnancies, perpetrators and victims of every kind of abuse. After an average of 4 years, our residents gain academic education, 3 marketable skills, accountability and responsibility, dignity, decency and integrity. We have successfully graduated over 15,000 people from America’s underclass into society as successful taxpaying, citizens leading decent, legitimate and productive lives. We have pioneered new models of education: • Over 10,000 formerly illiterate people have received high school equivalency degrees • Over 1000 have graduated with a diploma from our state accredited post-secondary vocational three year program taught by our own residents. • Fifty students have received an accredited BA either in Human Relations from our chartered college campus through Golden Gate University or majoring in Delancey’s Urban Studies program through San Francisco State University. • Over students have graduated from our ten-year-old charter public high school for juvenile justice youths, 50% of whom have gone on to college; 5% to vocational schools; 3% to the military and the other 42% into career jobs. This is remarkable considering that 90% entered our school as dropouts and complete school failures. We have pioneered pathways out of violence, bigotry and hatred:  • Delancey has moved over 10,000 violent, racial gang members away from gangs into active non-violence. • Over 5,000 Delancey folks have mentored others teaching non-violence and inter-racial mediation. • Delancey is completely self-governed by a Board and resident councils that are 1/3 African American, 1/3 Hispanic/American Indian and 1/3 Anglo, as is our population. Women comprise about 25% of the population and about 30 to 40%of management.  We have pioneered programs out of homelessness: • Through complete sweat equity, we have built and/or remodeled over 1500 units of very low-income housing built by the residents themselves with union support training over 800 people in the building trades throughout our 35 years. • We have moved over 2000 homeless people into permanent housing. • Our high school students renovated their own school expanding it from 8,000 square feet to 24,000 square feet. We have pioneered an entrepreneurial pathway out of poverty. • We have successfully developed over 20 enterprises run completely by formerly unskilled people using the each-one-teach-one philosophy. • We have pooled our resources so that our enterprises have provided about 60% of the funding and growth of our organization. We have now grown to have facilities in New Mexico, North Carolina, New York, Los Angeles, and headquartered in San Francisco. We have received over 100 commendations and awards from presidents, governors, mayors, legislative bodies, professional, religious, community, housing, and business groups in all the areas in which we reside. We have been commended in the media in over 30 major news and magazine programs such as 60 Minutes, 20/20, John Stossel Specials, World News Tonight with Peter Jennings, PBS Special on Crime and Alternatives, Street Stories with Ed Bradley, Oprah Winfrey Prime Time Special on Self-Esteem, Good Morning America, among many others. We have been commended in the written media in well over 200 articles in our 35 years ranging from the Chronicle of Philanthropy, through Fast Company Magazine through the New York Times, the Washington Post, Parade Magazine, Reader’s Digest, People Magazine, Newsweek, The London Times, Financial Times.  We have been studied viewed and reviewed by a wide variety of researchers. The results are summarized by Dr. Karl Menninger, founder of Menninger Clinic who, after a 10-year follow up study stated, “Delancey Street is the best and most successful rehabilitation program I have studied in the world”.  While we are of course proud of our achievements, particularly because all have been accomplished by our residents themselves at no cost to the taxpayer or the client, we believe that because of our successes we have a larger responsibility to see that the mission of Delancey Street extends beyond reclaiming individual lives.
Target demographics: The population served by Delancey Street are adults who have hit bottom, are poor, homeless, substance abusers, been incarcerated, and are often illiterate and unskilled.
Direct beneficiaries per year: 1,500
Geographic areas served: United States
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Community Reviews

Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 1 stars  

3 people found this review helpful

If you're trying to get into this program, know that they aren't at all straight forward on the website. I was denied after a several hour interview because I take an anti-depressant. The website says no anti-psychotics...that's a whole different thing. So I got off the anti-depressant so I could be admitted for alcoholism, came back a few months later and was told "once you are denied , you don't get another chance." These people wasted numerous hours of my time and dashed my hopes of getting better through their well respected program due to very poor communication skills. I'm glad to have found this out prior to committing to 2 years of their lies.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

No

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Some

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Rating: 3 stars  

My loved one is there now due to bad choices he made in life. He didn't have a prison sentence or anything but he did abuse drugs. I am told I can not see or speak to him for 15 months, this breaks my heart because I am the one that suggested he goes there. No letters, calls, or visits for 15 months is cruel and unusual punishment. He is new to the program so I will sit back and see how this works. I am happy though that for now he is off drugs. Maby this is what he needed to kick his addiction. He has a family, a fiance, and host of friends who are sober and are waiting for him to kick this habbit. He is a facebook lover and no computers, phones or TV's will probably bring the focus back to himself.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Unsure

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Some

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 1 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

this places black out dates are ridiculous!!!!!!!!!!! 1 yr for parents of client, 15 months to see your own kids and 18 months to see your significant other/spouse. this is cruel and unusual punishment!!!!! not even prison is this harsh. people need their families, alot sooner than this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

got husband in

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

lessen the black out dates to something more realistic!!!!!

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Rating: 5 stars  

3 people found this review helpful

I thank God I ran across all of this information.What wonderful information and stories I have read! I have a son that has been in and our of prison most of his adult life , drugs and acohol etc..He is currently in jail waiting to see what the justice system has in store. Abviously prison hasnt been the answer.Walk the fence and talk to other inmates about how they can get a fix in the inside, or the next crime they can get away with? As I read all the testimonies, Delancey Street is the hope for my Sons life. I pray there is devine intervention and you would except my son instead of another prison term. I have spoke to my son reguarding Delancey Street.He was very receptive.He realizes he is at the very bottom and needs the help.I hope you will give him a chance!Delancey could be the miracle he needs.I honestly believe this could the last chance in this life he could have.
Thank you so much for your time.
Keep up the great work!
Sincerly,
Carolyn Havins
805-499-5646
661-979-8458
email- shoutn2@hotmail.com

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I wish I had known of this organization many years ago. I had my head buried in the sand. How thankful I am for computors so I can research!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Get involved!

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Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 5 stars  

3 people found this review helpful

I went to D.S.F, some 15 years ago as a last chance, to save my miserable hide. I'd been using for 28 yrs. and had done 10 yrs. locked up. I was so lucky that D.S.F. gave me the chance to learn what made me crazy. So many things are learned at D.S.F. that we graduates could take up hours explaining. Bottom line they let me get a life. Which I love. My love for Mimi And the foundation will be never ending.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

that it allowed me to become a productive individule in the community. Who now owns a couple homes instead of robbing them. LOL!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-1-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

14 people found this review helpful

When I was in high school I was able to join a mentor for a tour of the Delancey Street Facility in San Francisco. I was so impressed by it that it remains one of my favorite charities. I have run into people from Delancey St. in so many places. I buy my trees from them at Christmas, I use them when I move, I eat at the restaurant, and I even had the opportunity to recommend one of their clients for a position at work once. The clients come out of that program with a totally new outlook on life. I have seen it happen more than once, and am proud to support them in whatever way I can.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my community at large.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

seeing the clients develop real pride in their lives, and

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

so dedicated to their clients and the service they provide.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

open a new facility, expand it's vocational training program to include more mid-level job training, green its existing facilities.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008-7-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

10 people found this review helpful

Although I am not at all aware of the inner-workings of this nonprofit, I am impressed by the way they help people with addictions and / or a criminal background integrate back into society in a positive way. The Delancey Street Restaurant and Crossroads Cafe are both fantastic interfaces for the public to experience this nonprofit and its people.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Quality buildings, quality people, quality mission

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

great!

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2008-7-01

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