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2009 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Compass Family Services

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Family Services, Homeless & Housing, Homeless Centers, Housing Search Assistance, Human Services

Mission: Compass Family Services helps homeless families and those at imminent risk to achieve housing stability, economic self-sufficiency, and well-being.

Results: Compass Family Services, known until 1995 as Travelers Aid San Francisco, was established in 1914 to provide assistance to newcomers to the city in preparation for the Panama-Pacific International Exposition in 1915. Since that time, Compass has served a wide range of populations from stranded travelers to refugees to homeless families, but a common denominator among the various groups has been a need for help in an often unfriendly urban environment. Today, Compass leads the way in helping San Francisco families facing homelessness secure stable housing and attain economic self-sufficiency and family well-being. We have been service innovators for more than 100 years and over 90% of the families we house achieve lasting success. When you invest in Compass Family Services and our comprehensive, personalized, and proven, goal-driven programs, you're making a vital, positive, and profound impact by helping homeless families in our community transition from the streets to self-sufficiency.

Target demographics: Low-income and homeless families

Direct beneficiaries per year: More than 5,000 parents and children

Geographic areas served: San Francisco, CA

Programs: Compass Family Services creates a strong safety net for homeless and at-risk families by providing a broad continuum of services that help our clients find and maintain stable housing and build strong families. Compass' six programs for families are: **Compass Connecting Point (CCP)** is the entry point for services for any San Francisco family facing a housing crisis. CCP manages the waiting list for the San Francisco family shelter system and serves as a clearinghouse for eviction prevention and rental assistance, with the goals of stabilizing at-risk families and rapidly rehousing families that are already homeless. Additionally CCP is a family resource center in which each family is immediately paired with a case manager who partners with them to address the issues that precipitated their housing crisis and to identify and achieve goals related to housing stability, family well-being, and self-sufficiency. **Compass Family Shelter** provides homeless families with a safe, temporary place to stay. An intensive array of support services enable families to secure and maintain housing, improve their employment prospects and address the underlying issues that contributed to their homelessness. **Compass Clara House** is a service-enriched transitional housing program for homeless families. Families live for up to two years in private apartments during which time parents engage in educational and vocational programs which lays the framework for a living wage career. The program provides licensed on-site childcare and afterschool programs as well as an array of intensive support services. **Compass SF HOME** helps homeless and at-risk families find, stabilize, and maintain their housing. Depending on their need, families may receive one-time assistance to prevent eviction or cover move-in costs, and/or an ongoing rental subsidy. All families in the program are provided with long-term case management to support them in becoming economically self-sufficient and maintaining their housing. **Compass Children’s Center** is a nationally accredited enriched early childhood education center with a curriculum tailored to meet the specific needs of children living in extreme poverty and homelessness. The Center serves 70 children, ages 0-5, and their families each day, and addresses the social, emotional, cognitive, and physical development of the children, as well as the well-being of the families. **Compass Clinical Services** provides crisis intervention and trauma informed therapy to families engaged in any of the other Compass Family Services programs. Our services reflect our understanding of the complexities of trauma as well as the range of traumatic experiences. Compass Family Services has created systems to train and support the staff on providing these trauma sensitive services to the families. Our approach involves training and education, supervision and support, attention to self-care for both the individual and the organization, attention to creating a welcoming and safe environment, and development of policies and procedures that reflect our understanding of how trauma has impacted our families.

Community Stories

6 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Tatia_Sidez95

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I believe it's absolutely imperative to help out families that's in need! I put myself in their shoes and imagine what life is like without enough clothes,shoes,water,shelter,or maybe even a good conversation without it always being about needing and I wish I had. Children are my TOP priority. This cannot go unnoticed. Ifor we are able then let's do it. Let's do it right.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I heard about the adopt a family for Christmas through my daughter Carrie who works there. Every year I look forward to seeing who my new family is and head right out the door to shop. The lists are great, so complete and helpful. Everyone involved has been very sweet in answering all my questions. The new method of delivery is a lot better. All on one day at one place and having help from people to get all the gifts from your car to the building. I've been involved with the program ever since Erica started it. Each year I look forward to buying for the little ones especially. It is the highlight of the Christmas season.

7

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been involved with Compass on a number of levels over the past twenty years. I originally worked alongside them advocating for homeless families and youth in San Francisco when I worked at another agency. When I began a non-profit consulting business, I helped them on a grant to secure federal funding for Clara House, their transitional housing facility for homeless families. I've adopted families during their holiday season and most recently I've been involved volunteering to secure donated furniture deliver it to the homes of newly housed families.

10

Volunteer

Rating: 5

until this past year, my experience with compass has primarily been that of a contributor.....however, with a group of "compass" supporters, we found a way to continue the help that compass provides...after compass doing the "hard" work of finding appropriate housing for families that are homeless, we have decided to furnish houses for those most needy.....this is done through donations of gently used household items and/or financial contributions. we hope our efforts support the incredible ongoing efforts of compass to make life more comfortable to those families in need.

10

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have only had positive experiences at the Tenderloin Childcare Center. I have visited to volunteer and to shadow the Administrative Coordinator Diana Johnson. Everyone on staff was warm and professional. The day care and class rooms were filled with nothing but smiling faces, and happy (if not rambunctious) children. The center provides a much needed service to our most vulnerable residences in one of the most disadvantaged neighborhoods in San Francisco.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a holiday volunteer for the past 3 years, Compass never ceases to amaze me. A fine example of professionals working collaborativley to assist homeless families. great work!