2020 Annual Report
We believe that everyone deserves a home.
Thank you for the gift of your support as you navigated the hardships of this year. Another gift was the clarity of our purpose as we focused on what is most essential: Everyone deserves safety, connection, and joy. Everyone deserves a home.
As we adapted to the pandemic, we became stronger as an organization and relentless in our advocacy for our community. We worked hard to limit the impact of COVID by keeping our buildings safe and clean, securing supplies to keep residents and staff protected, and pushing for policies prioritizing the needs of those we serve.
This year also highlighted how much must be done to overcome the racist foundations of this country. It deepened our resolve to be a workplace and housing provider that doesn’t just talk about equity but creates real change and opportunity at DISH.
In 2021, Doug will be stepping away from his founding role, creating opportunities for new leaders within DISH. His deep commitment to our mission, values, laughter and joy will be missed. We are deeply grateful for what we built together with the DISH team, residents, and all of you.
As we look forward, we will continue to push for homes for those on San Francisco’s streets, and for resources that meet the very real needs of our community with dignity and love. We miss seeing you and hope we can be together this fall to celebrate our 15th anniversary!
Lauren Hall and Doug Gary
Chair of the Board
At DISH, we believe that everyone deserves a safe, supportive home.
We serve individuals who have experienced long-term homelessness, severe trauma, and chronic health challenges. We eliminate barriers to our housing and embrace the commitment to serve our 570 residents with respect, kindness, and a relent-less drive to ensure that they do not return to homelessness.
We believe that homelessness is a result of the intersection of poverty, trauma, and institutional racism present in our nation. We believe that our role as a supportive housing provider is not just to welcome people home but also to strive for equity and inclusion.
The DISH team is on-site 24 hours, offering security, stability, and a welcoming home. Across our sites our partners provide individual clinical support and community based art, food and wellness activities. Our 8 housing sites are located in the Tenderloin, South of Market and Mission neighborhoods.
Excellence and focus
Prioritize items under our direct control and deliver high-quality service.
Fairness and consistency
Strive for equity and inclusion for our tenants and our staff.
Initiative and innovation
Never stagnate, frequently review, refine, and enhance our services and procedures.
Respect and openness
In our interactions, be honest, direct, and embrace differences.
Darryl, DISH resident
While we successfully managed the risks from COVID, we tragically lost a small number of our beloved residents to accidental overdoses. In response, we broadened our harm reduction protocols and set a new standard in supportive housing. We are providing readily available naloxone on residential floors in addition to staff-supported access to the overdose reversal medication 24-7. To address increased risks due to the isolation of sheltering in place, we are piloting the first “Brave Buttons” available in San Francisco, in partnership with the Brave Technology Co-op, the DOPE Project, and resident leaders. Thanks to private donations, residents will have an emergency button in each room to alert staff or a neighbor to check in for help that will decrease response time for emergency services and save lives.
In 2020, DISH and EngAGE partnered to create dedicated community-building activities to promote creativity and connection. With such a long shelter in place order, isolation has been a strain on everyone’s mental health. The programs led by Mattie, EngAGE Program Director, are a lifeline for residents, inspiring them to stay active, creative, and connected. The weekly distanced walks, art classes, and hallway bingo have been the favorites so far! This Community Wellness Pilot was funded by Dignity Health and Wells-Fargo and private donors.
This year, long-standing challenges of food insecurity increased as shopping became more difficult and nearby restaurants shuttered. We responded to this by expanding our meal programs. We increased our collaboration with Centro Latino de SF and piloted a partnership with La Cocina to provide free meals while supporting local small businesses led primarily by immigrant women of color. The distribution of the delicious hot meals has also served as a critical opportunity to connect with residents while remaining socially distant.
Advocating for tenants rights
At DISH, we want our tenants to pay less in rent! With an average annual income of less than $10,000, the rent burden falls harder on supportive housing tenants who are already disproportionately represented by people of color. Many are paying rents at 50% of their income or higher depending on the funding source. As a part of the 30 Right Now Coalition, we advocated with the Board of Supervisors for rent equity, successfully passing legislation to lower rent to 30% of income across the DISH portfolio! Laurie, our Community Advisory Board member and DISH resident of 5 years, shares: “The rent reduction is helping me make ends meet at the end of every month. I feel much less worried now without such high rent expenses.”
Lynn, DISH resident and Community Advisory Board member
The meals are wonderful and having them come to the Empress is a blessing. My favorite dishes have been the Turkey Dinner with Mash Potatoes and the EnchiladasLynn
Food security is housing security
Lynne is a Community Advisory Board member, a resident leader helping DISH shape its decisions for the benefit of our community.
Even with housing secured, pieces were still missing as Lynne could not always access 3 nutritious meals a day. Nutrition is a critical step on the path to recovery from the trauma of homelessness. With extremely limited resources, our residents often miss out on high quality meals, and often report going without food
The Tenderloin is classified as a food desert where access to fresh, healthy, and affordable food is nearly impossible and existing meal delivery programs can present barriers for residents.
Ensuring that residents have access to healthy prepared meals as part of our service package is a critical component for wellness, engagement in services, and housing stability. Everyone deserves a good meal!
Tenants who moved on to independent housing.
Signed leases in 2020.
Our annual tenant survey provides us with an opportunity to improve our services.
Approximate number of meals delivered to DISH residents during the pandemic.
Angelina, DISH resident
Art & Community
Angelina is an artist and longtime DISH resident. She shared her talents during on-site art classes and her work was featured at the SWIM gallery. The art exhibition, called “Yours Truly”, featured other artists from the DISH community, including the community’s “Hope Quilt.” Selections from this exhibit can be viewed on our website.
Together with our partner EngAGE, DISH is piloting a holistic wellness program focused on connection, arts, education, and creative expression that is critical to the health of our communities.
During the shelter in place order, joyful safe activities including distanced art classes, take-home craft kits, and hallway bingo are a welcome reprieve.
I’ve been quite depressed, but because of art, I’ve been allowed to express myself, share some of my feelings, and just enjoy!ANGELINA
Ajaye, Lead Janitor
I have been working at DISH for a little over three years and I stay here because I appreciate the family setting. Here at DISH, it feels like a hard-working family striving hard with one goal to do our part in ending homelessness. Even in these dreadful times we are living in, I am blessed to be working around the staff that I have worked with during this pandemic. They have shown me that we can come together and make it together as one. There’s no me without them.Ajaye, Lead Janitor
With over 10 years of service
Average tenure of DISH staff
Our Janitorial Supervisor, Aubrey, has good reason to be proud of his team. In his words:
“I would not want to go to war with any other group of guys! The DISH janitorial team has stepped up during this pandemic and adjusted to the new protocols ordered by the City. The motivation, willingness, and great attitude of the team have made this process an easy transition. The team adjusting to the challenges and constant changes in how policy is being implemented just show the foundation of the Values and Commitments of DISH.”
Over the last year since COVID started, it has been a difficult time for everyone. The COVID hazard pay I received has been really helpful to me and my family. With the support of fellow DISHers, we made it through, and in the process we also kept people housed. I commute from Sacramento every day and during COVID I continued to come to work because I love DISH and I love my job!Glenda, Desk Clerk
The work of DISH’s desk clerks has never been easy. They are the eyes, ears, and hearts of our sites and are often the only staff person on duty.
They watch over the residents and are always there for support, concerns, and a friendly face. In addition to their usual duties, they now also ensure that residents are safe, by cleaning common spaces, enforcing safety measures, relaying health information, and even checking on residents by calling them regularly and when needed, saving lives by administering Narcan.
Glenda has worked at DISH since 2017, and has been spotlighted by her peers for her exceptional work. Senior General Manager, Denise, shares that “Glenda has done amazing work in keeping her team and our tenants safe”. She is currently training to become an Assistant General Manager as part of our internal promotion initiative and has supported operations at several DISH sites.
Providing service 24-7
Glenda, Desk Clerk
I believe in supportive housing as a critical piece of solving homelessness in San Francisco. Though the city funds housing, it’s not sufficient. DISH’s programs and community building that are not publicly funded are such an important part of being human. As a donor, it’s rewarding to contribute to that human side.Susannah Raub
DISH Supporter since 2018
When we issue the key to a home, we see the immediate relief and glimmers of hope in the eyes of new residents. People are often exhausted and just want to lay down and rest. The need for respite and fostering hope became even more urgent as COVID spread.
While this time has been extremely difficult, many of us faced this in a comfortable home, working remotely with easy access to fresh air, Wi-Fi, delivered groceries and contact with loved ones. The impact was devastating on our neighbors struggling with poverty and chronic health issues with limited access to technology, transportation, healthy food and meaningful connection.
As we rallied to support the DISH community, the majority of our team didn’t get to work from home in their pajamas. They showed up every day. They kept the doors open even when it felt really scary to do so. They kept our buildings safe and they saved lives.
This year tested us on what it takes to truly welcome everyone home. Being essential took on new meaning as we worked to protect residents and staff from the virus, ensured people had enough food, and found safe ways to promote connection and joy.
While we knew our government funding could not provide all of the needed resources, we knew we could count on you as we tried to meet the challenges in front of us. This year, our community needed us to show up, and you showed up with us every step of the way. Thank you.
Please keep showing up with us by supporting our work at dishsf.org.
2020 Total Revenue
76% Public Support
16% Tenant Rent
7% Private Support
1% Earned Revenue
2020 Total Expenses
Figures above represent unaudited financials for January-December, 2020. DISH is a project of Tides and Tides will soon make available its 2020 audited financial statements.
DISH would like to thank its 2020 supporters:
AAA Business Supplies and Interiors
Courtney Bencze & Chris, Dylan & Owen Leahy
Marcy Bergman & David Durham
Bleyle Elevator, Inc.
Annette Blum & Mike Pearson
Kathy Bolts & Blake Hernandez
Pati Boyle & Mike McLoone
Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP
California Health Care Foundation
Harlan & Liz Chapman
Maya Churi & Mike Jones
Lauren & Christopher Conklin
Corporation for Supportive Housing
Christopher DeJong & Ann Speyer
Dolby Laboratories, Inc.
Tamar Dorfman & Joe Kahne
Episcopal Community Services
Virginia Erck & David Petta
Sara & Mark Ferree
Chris Fillius & Allison Gray
First Mennonite Church of San Francisco
Funding Circle USA, Inc
Doug Gary & John Wiskind
Keith & Priscilla Geeslin
Robert Gitin, Jocelyn Everroad & Rosie Gitin
Jasper & Elise Goldberg
Jim Goldberg & Kathleen Piraino
Jennifer & Kevin Graber
Clare Gupta & Andrew Myers
Jim Morales & Lauren Hall
Wendell & Wendy Hall
Geoffrey & Kathy Hansen
John Hayes & Jennifer Minore
Irma Herrera & Mark Levine
Homeless Prenatal Program
Brigitt Jandreau-Smith & Jeff Bayles
Carla Javits & Margaret Cecchetti
John Mark Johnson
Amy Kent Heasman
Kevin Kress & Christopher Schultz
Erin La Ninfa
Laney College FabLab
Maryann Leshin & Charles Ridgell
Grace Lesser & Shawn Johnson
Levi Strauss & Co.
Jane Levikow & Jan Speller
Jacqueline & Ben Linder
Kimber Lockhart & Benjamin Trombley Shapiro
Jeremy & Taylor Loewen
Kathie & Dexter Lowry
Allan Samson Manalo
Fara & Douglas Marinkovich
Nina Marinkovich & Kirk Larson
Market Design Furniture, INC
Marsh & McLennan Agency
Roger & Patricia Maxwell
Justin McBride, Jeanne Cloutier & Miles Patrick McBride
Benjamin McCloskey & David Wieand
Jody Meese & Bruce Roberts
Jim Meininger & Jason Pellegrini
Mercy Housing California
Lucy Milligan Wahl & Andrew Vaillancourt Wahl
Non Plus Ultra Inc.
Marcela Ochoa Ramos
Liz Orlin & John Ifcher
John O’Toole & Jean Hom
Scott Owens & Steven Miller
Rick & Jean Paik Schoenberg
Jennifer & Andrew Park
Eli & Lucy Pellegrini
Mary Ann Presas
Professional Computer Support
Robert Gore Rifkind Foundation
David Rothschild, Serena Warner & Eli & Pepper Rothschild
David Rothstein & Kim Hall
Martha Ryan & Daniel McDonald
Russ Schmidt & Barton Shulman
Michael & Marianne Seiler
Seven Stills Brewery & Distillery
SF New Deal
Simply The Basics
Sleep Tight Pest Control, Inc.
Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation
The James Irvine Foundation
The Salvation Army
The San Francisco Foundation
The Walt Disney Company Foundation
Molly Timmerman Timmerman
Emily Van Loon
Joris van Mens
Katrina Van Valkenburgh
Sher & John Waidelich
Walker & Dunlop
Sarah, Mas & Ethan Watanabe
Heather Williamson & John Gridley
Bob & Anne Wiskind
Caleb & Linda Wistar
Emily Wistar & Dan Hammer
Greg Wolff & Lori Howard
Kate Zyskowski & Justin Schram
And a special thank you to our monthly donors:
Nicola Antonazzo & Leila Perrard
Roxanne Hanson & Maria Elizabeth Martinez