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Building Opportunities for Self-Sufficie...

Building Opportunities for Self-Suf...
CROWDRISE : Apr 28, 2014
Tax ID: 51-0173390
BASED: Berkeley, CA, United States


Help End Poverty

The mission of BOSS is to help homeless, poor, and disabled people achieve health and self-sufficiency, and to fight against the root causes of poverty and homelessness.

The organization was founded in 1971 by a group of volunteers from the Hillel Streetwork Project (including founder and long-time Board Member Ursula Sherman) who responded to the needs of mentally ill individuals being released to the streets by state hospital closures. Ursula raised enough money to pay first director Jim Baumohl $50 per week, and the volunteer-run initiative was incorporated to become a nonprofit service organization.

Over the years as the crisis of state hospital closures was compounded by others—sharply reduced federal housing funds, failing schools, unaffordable health care, a shrinking tax base to support locally needed housing and services, and more—the number of homeless people exploded throughout our communities. During the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s (led by former Executive Director boona cheema), BOSS continually added new programs in response to changing needs: shelters, transitional houses, education and employment programs, family and child development services, health and mental health care programs, leadership development and organizing initiatives, and more. BOSS partnered with city and county health departments, other nonprofit service providers, local landlords, courts, doctors and therapists, and others, to expand the variety and effectiveness of programs for homeless people.

Today BOSS is an award-winning grassroots organization that combines neighborhood-based housing and assistance programs with a strong social justice focus—actively working to change the root causes of homelessness through community education, sharing our data and lessons with policy makers, participating in community planning, and organizing for improved policies and resources for homeless people.

Tax ID: 51-0173390 •


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