An Initiative of United Way
of Santa Cruz County

Smart Solutions to Homelessness-
In This Issue
Stuff the Bus Sends Over 2,000 Students Back to School with Supplies

Smart Solutions was a proud sponsor of this year's Stuff the Bus- the most successful in history!

On August 8th nearly 100 community volunteers and local businesses gathered at Capitola Mall to sort and fill 2,000 backpacks with school supplies for our homeless and most vulnerable youth. 

What Are Smart Solutions?


Produce measurable results

Cost effective

Benefit the entire community

Take a step toward ending homelessness

Support the dignity of each individual

Our VISION is a Santa Cruz County in which every community member has some form of safe shelter, and where homelessness is a rare occurrence.

Our MISSION is to build the community will to reduce and ultimately end homelessness in Santa Cruz County through education and collaborative action.
Homeless Services Center: Still Serving

Written by Nahal Mirfendereski
Intern, Smart Solutions to Homelessness
The loss of the $350,000 U.S. Housing and Urban Development Emergency Solutions Grant that Santa Cruz County's Homeless Services Center would have received this year has left many clients and faculty of the organization wondering how it will adequately distribute services. Fortunately, local funding from the County of Santa Cruz has stepped in and reimbursed the functioning of many services that would have otherwise been shuttered, including the Paul Lee Loft, the Mail Room, the Rebele Family shelter, and the 100-bed winter program.

The 50-bed Paul Lee Loft residential center has reopened and is guaranteed to remain open until December to provide emergency shelter to single men and women, who are on a clear pathway to housing through programs such as case management. However, walk-in visitors will be excluded from receiving day services, such as daily meals and showers, that continuing residents will still receive. For information on where to receive these services at other locations, dial 211 and/or check out a local advocate's Santa Cruz Free Guide
Ally Spotlight: Jail to Jobs
(Photo Credit:

Congratulations to Community Action Board of Santa Cruz County and the ALCANCE program for implementing cost-effective solutions that work to improve the lives of our community members!

ALCANCE's Jail to Jobs program is not just helping incarcerated individuals secure employment upon release. It is providing the means to maintain stable housing, which in turn slows down one of the "faucets" that leads to high rates of local homelessness!

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