Shanti Project

Rating: 4.98 stars   63 reviews

Issues: Health, Cancer, Breast Cancer

Location: 730 Polk St., 3rd Floor San Francisco CA 94109 USA

Mission: Shanti is dedicated to closing the gap between people who receive comprehensive medical care and those who do not, and provides the information, skills and support clients need to make informed decisions about their treatment, improve their health and wellness, and enjoy good health outcomes and a high quality of life. Originally founded in 1974 to help people dying of cancer, Shanti was one of the first organizations to respond to San Francisco s AIDS crisis.  Today the organization provides a variety of emotional and practical support services that help people living with HIV/AIDS and breast cancer. Services include a drop-in center, peer and treatment advocacy, case management, health counseling, patient navigation, and activities. Shanti also shares its expertise in volunteer management and HIV/AIDS peer education with other local and national organizations interested in starting or improving their programs.
Target demographics: Our clients are all underserved individuals with life-threatening illnesses & often come from challenged, at-risk & underserved communities including women & those of trans experience, communities of color, seniors, the homeless and marginally housed & those with a dual or triple diagnosis with mental health &/or substance use issues in addition to their positive HIV or breast cancer diagnosis.
Geographic areas served: San Francisco
Programs: Shanti serves over 2,000 men and women every year through the following programs: The Breast Cancer Program reduces the obstacles faced by individuals with breast cancer by providing a continuum of tailored services that address their physical, emotional, psychosocial, educational and support needs. Clients are primarily low-income, uninsured and medically underserved San Franciscans, the majority of whom are women of color and who are living in poverty. HIV Services Program provides care navigation, peer advocacy, a drop-in center, activities and events, support groups, women's services and encourages a continuity of HIV treatment and care through the provision of culturally competent support to at-risk, underserved HIV positive communities. Volunteer Services Program trains volunteers to provide emotional support and practical assistance to individuals living with life-threatening illnesses, using the internationally recognized Shanti Model of Peer SupportTM. Volunteers serve clients through one-on-one client/volunteer matches, short-term or one-time only support, our drop-in center, our activities program and by offering workshops and classes. L.I.F.E. Program® is a health-enhancement program based on the latest medical research in mind-body medicine. “L.I.F.E.” stands for Learning Immune Function Enhancement. Evaluation research shows that L.I.F.E. reduces risk behavior, improves quality of life, increases medication adherence and reduces health problems. Our programs have the potential to increase the health of individuals with HIV, Hepatitis C, breast cancer and other immune related illnesses. Community Support Program provides management, administrative support and training to council members of the San Francisco EMA (Eligible Metropolitan Area) HIV Health Services Planning Council. This body is mandated by the U.S. Congress to determine the size and demographics of the population of individuals with HIV in the three county area and the needs of this population.
2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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EIN 94-2297147
415-674-4700
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Community Reviews

Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

Shanti Project, they care about the work they do, their clients and how they reach others in the community. I had the pleasure of working with this amazing and dedicated staff during the past four months while planning their 40th Anniversary Benefit Dinner. I have never worked with a more dedicated & supportive staff in my 30+ years of fundraising. Pleasure to work with, amazing to hear their stories and see them work with the clients they service. Know when you donate to this organization, your money is spent well and for such great programs!

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I went through the volunteer training about 20 years ago! That training informed my work with nonprofits. I joined the staff to help raise funds for the organization in 2012 and I couldn't be happier. Our work with breast cancer clients and people living with HIV helps the most at risk and underserved, and the clients really appreciate our hard work.

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

I wish we could raise more awareness about Shanti. People deserve to know what a great resource we have in San Francisco.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

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

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 4 stars  

I have known of Shanti for years but only recently become intimately involved with day to day operations. The mission of Shanti was evident in the staff and volunteers present. Staff are helpful, open and aware of who is around and who they serve. Their service outcomes, outputs, and financial information is available on their website and is understandable. The Executive Director and Board are accessible to most anyone seeking information.

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

Help them improve the condition of their offices. Many service oriented nonprofits don't have the luxury of fancy offices but an occasional update and refresh makes everyone feel happier - clients, volunteers and staff alike.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Quite well

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

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 5 stars  

12 people found this review helpful

Shanti has been a part of my life since I first attended the volunteer training in the early years of the AIDS pandemic. I can still remember the powerful moment in my training when I knew that my life had been permanently changed. Since that moment I have never regretted the subsequent years I have spent with the organization as a volunteer, a staff member in every area of the organization from volunteer coordinator to Executive Director, and a volunteer again. Since joining the organization in my late 30's to now in my 60's, Shanti has helped make me a better person. I have never forgotten each client that I was matched with in the early years and the life lessons they taught me. The lessons I learned from them were so rewarding to me that I have always felt that I've received much more than I have ever given. I have continued to learn from clients, volunteers and staff throughout the ensuing years and find myself very grateful for the life I've had compared to the life I might have had if Shanti had not come into my life. I am proud to be a part of the Shanti community.

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

in supporting women and men with AIDS and breast cancer who are homeless or minimally housed, uninsured,and frequently have no family to look to for help. Invariably they leave us better off than they were when first coming to Shanti.

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

Well, I actually did run the organization for four years so if we had more secured or unrestricted funding we would be able to build up reserves and ultimately provide more activities and services with increased appropriate staffing for the clients.

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

The valuable life lessons I learned as a volulnteer and the time I spent with the clients I was matched with up through my years as a staff member.

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

the most amazing and committed indiviudals that I had seen. Immediately I felt welcomed into a special community committed to supporting clients to make informed choices for their own care where we learned immediately we didn't have to "fix it" for them.

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

expand its type of nonjudgemental support services to just about any life-threatening or life-altering illness. Because the Shanti model can be so easily adapted it would also be able to offer more training to other organizations on a larger scale.

Ways to make it better...

I can't imagine my experience possibly being any better. I know that 85 cents of every dollar goes directly to client services so with more funding they would be able to expand services and staff.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

As with most nonprofits, more resources and increased unrestricted funding to be able to build up reserves to help through difficult times.

One thing I'd also say is that...

Thank you to Shanti's founder, Charlie Garfield, and to the staff, volunteers, and clients for teaching me so much and for the opportunity to incorporate the Shanti model into my life.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-11-01

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