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CSH's History

It was a revolutionary idea: give the most needy men and women on our streets a home and surround them with the care they need. CSH was founded on this idea, which would become the solution to homelessness for the neediest people.

Over twenty years ago, a homeless advocate named Julie Sandorf was approached by two Franciscan priests who were successfully saving their mentally ill parishioners from homelessness. She travelled to their St. Francis Residence, founded for mentally ill parishioners on the brink of eviction from a single room occupancy hotel.

With a safe place to live and psychiatrists and social workers on site, the tenants stayed housed and healthy.

Julie spent the next year studying this new housing approach. With support from the Pew Charitable Trusts, she found hundreds of similar stories around U.S.: troubled people who had bounced between shelters, hospitals, jails and the streets were suddenly living productive lives thanks to this combination of quality housing and support services.

In 1991, Julie founded the Corporation for Supportive Housing with funding from three of the nation’s leading philanthropies--the Pew Charitable Trusts, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the Ford Foundation.

Twenty years later, we’re still inspired to bring supportive housing to those who need it most. From our New York City headquarters and our growing number of field office locations, CSH offers a comprehensive portfolio of services that boost the value and impact of work in cities and states throughout the U.S. CSH was established to support the efforts of local pioneers developing service-supported housing for those most in need. It initially focused on people coping with homelessness and extreme poverty, as well as chronic health conditions such as mental illness, addiction or HIV/AIDS.

 

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