It’s a great day when organizations come together to make a difference in the lives of those experiencing homelessness.
On behalf of the Lucky Duck Foundation, we are pleased to provide mattresses, bedding, linens, welcome kits, and other necessary supplies to welcome and aid the youth who will move off the streets and into these critically needed 20 additional beds. Reducing youth homelessness is one of our primary focus areas for 2023 for a multitude of reasons, and we are thrilled these beds are now open to help more youth.
Additionally, we have an ongoing effort called “Shamrocks and Shipwrecks” which is meant to highlight meaningful action and quantify political will and effectiveness around addressing homelessness throughout San Diego County. Strong actions that drive progress earn “Shamrocks,” while ineffectiveness and inaction earn “Shipwrecks.”
We are pleased to award both the County of San Diego and City of San Diego with a shamrock for this effort, along with Urban Street AngelsAngles. The County provided funds to cover construction and capital costs to make these beds possible, and the cost per bed to do so was economical. It was an excellent investment.
The City of San Diego, through the San Diego Housing Commission, is providing funding to operate the beds, so that Urban Street Angels can provide supportive services and staff to help youth not only move off the streets, but also keep them off the streets by connecting them to education, employment, and housing opportunities to completely improve the trajectory of their lives.
The maximization of this asset and effective use of government dollars to add urgently needed shelter beds for youth is exactly what should be done time and again throughout the County to reduce homelessness. Imagine how many additional beds and immediate pathways off the streets could be activated if every available asset was maximized like this space is being maximized.
We applaud and thank Supervisor Nathan Fletcher and San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria for supporting this effort and making it possible. These types of public-private partnerships are critical.
We also applaud the big-hearted servant leader of Urban Street Angels, Eric Lovett, who spearheaded this effort by identifying the opportunity to add beds and chased down funding from government and philanthropy to make these beds a reality.
So again, we believe this type of collaboration and maximization of resources can and should be replicated on a much larger scale, and the Lucky Duck Foundation is prepared to support more of these kinds of efforts. These 20 beds will bring 20 youth off the streets immediately with a path towards a better future, and importantly they will help approximately 60 youth per year end their homelessness.