Hearth is a non-profit organization dedicated to the elimination of homelessness among the elderly. This mission is accomplished through a unique blend of prevention, placement, and housing programs all designed to help elders find and succeed in homes of their own.
To this end, all housing operated by Hearth provides a creative array of supportive services that assist residents to age with dignity, regardless of their special medical, mental health, or social needs. Hearth believes these goals are best accomplished through respect for elders and staff, with the desire to see both achieve their highest degree of potential.
Hearth Home clients are faced with an increased risk of COVID-19 due to their age. In response, Hearth Home has set up a COVID-19 Emergency relief fund with the goal of raising $500,000 as quickly as possible to help fund operational expenses through June, to establish a food pantry for Hearth Residents and those facing food insecurities, and to purchase supplies to curb the spread of COVID-19. Hearth has also implemented social distancing measures at its sites and has increased sanitation in high-traffic areas.
Originally founded as The Committee to End Elder Homelesness in 1991, the non-profit realized that the elderly were a growing population of homeless individuals. With the implementation of prevention, placement, and housing programs, Hearth’s unique design of supportive services aims to end the reality of homelesness for elderly individuals. The organization recorded information from the Stanford Center in 2018 that 30% of baby boomers nationally do not have anything within their retirement fund. Statistics like this help Hearth Home construct a strategic plan to provide assistance for elderly individuals that experience homelesness.
In 2019, Hearth Home adopted a five-year strategic plan to curb homelesness for the elderly. The first Goal of the plan looks towards systematic barriers that make homelesness likely for eldery individuals. For Hearth Home, this meant taking a look at the limited resources of the Department of Mental Health and the gap between average senior income and the cost of living. Goal 2 looks to address public policy that contributes to elderly homelesness, while Goals 3 & 4 look to build an organization that will thrive despite the decrease of public funding, and can adapt to the changes in funding sources.
Hearth has been around since 1994. Their typical revenue over the past few years has been between $3-4 million. Their expenses have fluctuated over the past several years, and they have had years of negative operating losses. They do have sizable reserves around $7 million. Their leadership team has several members who have been in place at their organization for many years, and their board is listed on their website.
Excellence in Management and Operations
Along with a traditional leadership team, Hearth includes a Board of Visitors. Members of this board serve as advisers, advocates, and ambassadors for the organization and the programming that is provided. Hearth’s Board of Visitors model holds the organization accountable and true to the mission it intends to serve.