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Old Posted Apr 28, 2009, 8:52 AM
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sirkingwilliam sirkingwilliam is offline
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Haven for Hope (1-stop homeless center) could be national model when it opens

Greehey touts 1-stop homeless center

By Jennifer Hiller - Express-News

San Antonio’s $90 million, one-stop homeless transformation campus could become a national model when it opens later this year, the project’s biggest cheerleader and benefactor said Monday.

Already, Haven for Hope has been visited by officials from 37 cities, Bill Greehey, chairman of NuStar Energy LP and former CEO and chairman of Valero Energy Corp., told members of the local chapter of the American Institute of Architects on Tuesday.

AIA members heard an update of the Haven for Hope project from Greehey at a luncheon at the downtown Luby’s.

“We are now going to become the national model for everyone else,” Greehey said.

Haven for Hope will provide an array of services for the homeless, including housing for families, outdoor safe-sleeping zones, job training, detox and medical assistance, dental and vision care. The center will house dozens of agencies and organizations in an attempt to address the root causes of homelessness.

The detox unit already is open, and the entire facility should open by the end of the year.

The San Antonio Community Council to End Homelessness looked at homeless centers in Phoenix, Miami, Los Angeles and San Diego, Calif., pulling the best practices out of each of them. The dental clinic in Phoenix, for example, was excellent, but the center did not serve families — something the San Antonio group saw as a gaping hole. About half of homeless people have children, Greehey said.

James Andrews, associate principal at Overland Partners Architects, the lead design firm, said architects also considered best practices. Some homeless shelters across the country resembled warehouses without windows, for example. And none have dog kennels, as Haven for Hope will. Many homeless people have pets and will not abandon them to receive services.

“There’s a basic level of humanity,” Andrews said.

Haven for Hope will be located west of downtown near the University Health Center and Bexar County Jail.

The city will own the campus, but the nonprofit Haven for Hope will operate it.

“And I need money,” said Greehey, appealing to AIA members. He is working to raise about $4.2 million by the end of the year to complete the fundraising.
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Old Posted Apr 28, 2009, 6:38 PM
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miaht82 miaht82 is offline
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This is a great project. What a great concept; consolidate all services into one location. I hope this is a model for other projects as well. There is a lack of organization sometimes that makes San Antonio feel like a midsize town. Things are slowly coming together here and this is a major part of it.
The Raleigh Connoisseur
It is the city trying to escape the consequences of being a city
while still remaining a city. It is urban society trying to eat its
cake and keep it, too.
- Harlan Douglass, The Suburban Trend, 1925
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Old Posted May 1, 2009, 8:19 PM
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jaga185 jaga185 is offline
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^^^ I totally agree. As of now, what do we have for the homeless?
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Old Posted Apr 19, 2010, 8:44 AM
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sirkingwilliam sirkingwilliam is offline
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One year later and it's open.


  • 940 beds
  • 280,000 square feet
  • 37-acres
  • $100 million cost




It is a historic day in San Antonio as the highly anticipated Haven for Hope campus, which is already touted as the national model in the fight against homelessness, is being officially dedicated. After nearly three years of construction, the 37-acre, 280,000-square-foot homeless transformation campus is ready to open its doors, and the first residents will begin moving in at
the end of April.

Haven for Hope employees, elected officials, Haven for Hope’s social service partners, community leaders and other dignitaries will gather today to celebrate its completion. The festive dedication will be punctuated as local and state elected officials join Haven for Hope Chairman Bill Greehey in releasing over 1,000 live butterflies. Because Haven for Hope’s mission is the transformation of the lives of the homeless, the butterfly, an iconic symbol of transformation, has been adopted as a symbol of Haven for Hope.

“Haven for Hope is a window on the soul of San Antonio,” San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro said. “It reflects our city's strong sense of compassion and a belief in the power of an individual to transform himself or herself.”

Greehey praised the partnerships and mutual cooperation among public and private sectors that helped fund and build the $100 million project.

“This is one of the biggest public-private partnerships in San Antonio’s history, and it would not have been possible without the dedication, commitment and investment of countless individuals in both the public and private sectors,” said Greehey. “We are so grateful to the City of San Antonio, Bexar County and the State of Texas for dedicating funding, resources and other support. And we have been overwhelmed by the generosity of the hundreds of private donors who have helped us raise over $58 million, which puts us within $2 million of our fundraising goal!

“This is so important because we can’t solve the homeless crisis without everybody working together, and Haven for Hope is proof of the great things that can happen when the government and private sector work together toward a common goal,” Greehey added. “Together, we’re not just going to transform lives, we’re going to save lives.”

Also joining in the celebration was former San Antonio Mayor Phil Hardberger, who in 2006 appointed Greehey to head a committee to study the homelessness issue in San Antonio and recommend solutions to the problem. The committee conducted extensive research and examined the best practices of homeless transformation facilities across the country.

Combining the best practices from the leading transformation centers, the committee then developed the concept for Haven for Hope, which focuses on transformation and involves a one-stop campus in which individuals will have access to all of the services they need to turn their lives around.

“As a city, we should all be proud of this grand achievement,” said Hardberger. “Not only will Haven for Hope have the most innovative facilities and programming, they will treat our community’s most vulnerable population with the dignity and respect they need and deserve, and help put them on a path to a better life. Haven for Hope will be a place for second chances and for redemption, and who among us isn’t in need of some level of redemption?”

Haven for Hope will begin with a “soft opening” at the end of April as single men begin moving from SAMMinistries shelters onto campus.

Approximately 10 men will move in each day for the first two weeks, and then the numbers will ramp up after that. Women and families from the SAMMinistries facilities will begin moving onto campus in early June, and the entire campus is expected to be completely open to the public in mid June. The campus will have approximately 940 beds, plus an outdoor sleeping area known as Prospects Courtyard that can accommodate 400 initially, but could accommodate many more in inclement weather.

While Haven for Hope has not yet officially opened its doors, lives have already begun being transformed and saved on the campus. The campus medical, dental and vision services all started early last year. Through the end of February 2010, approximately 15,000 homeless and low-income patients from throughout the community have received about 53,000 treatments, valued at well over $3.2 million.

And the Restoration Center, which is run by the Center for Health Care Services of Bexar County and provides critical drug and alcohol dependency and mental health treatment at Haven for Hope, has provided tremendous taxpayer benefits by making better use of valuable police time and more economically and effectively treating individuals who otherwise would have gone to jail, courtrooms or emergency rooms. But most importantly, the facility and its staff have transformed and saved many lives that were once considered lost. For example, one homeless individual who had suffered from drug addiction for 40 years, made it through treatment and counseling at the Restoration Center. He is now living a happy and productive life with a job and a place to live, and he has been clean and sober for nearly a year.

“Haven for Hope is filling a critical void in our community that has existed for too long,” said Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff. “We have already seen the benefit to our community in terms of lives transformed and taxpayer dollars saved, and that impact will further grow as they open the campus.”

Among the more obvious transformations has been the campus itself. An area previously plagued by graffiti-laden abandoned buildings, has been transformed into a beautiful, landscaped campus with safe, secure and attractive buildings.

“When we proposed Haven for Hope, we promised that the facility would be something that would revitalize the community, and we’ve worked hard to make sure that happened,” said Greehey. “Now we look forward to living up to our promise of transforming and saving lives.”


The sheer scope of the Haven for Hope campus, where officials plan to gather today in celebration of its imminent opening, is remarkable even to Bill Greehey, the San Antonio businessman who was instrumental in raising public and private funds necessary to fuel the $100 million initiative.

“I knew what we needed to do” to help the homeless, Greehey said. “I just didn't realize the extent of all the services we would have to provide in order to change their lives.”

The 37-acre transformational center, which will house about 1,400 residents, has been under construction for three years. Its first residents — 10 men from the SAMMinistries emergency shelter — are scheduled to arrive on April 26.

Residents and others in need will have access to 78 social service providers on the campus. Its medical, dental and vision providers have been operating since early last year and already have served more than 14,800 homeless and low-income patients, according to Haven for Hope staff.

A throng of local officials — among them former Mayor Phil Hardberger, a central player in the center's creation — plan to converge on the center today to speak and release 1,000 live butterflies in a symbolic celebration of the campus's transformational potential.

Greehey said he's excited most of all by the state's $6.1 million investment in the center, which illustrates the campus's influential stature among other cities in the United States and beyond, he said.

Texas “wanted Haven for Hope to be a model for other cities to follow,” Greehey said. “We're going to be saving lives nationally and internationally.”

Greehey called the center unprecedented in its ambitions to change lives.

“Let's face it, we're going to have some problems,” he said. “But we're trying to do everything we can to avoid that by slowly moving these people in.”

Greehey said he expects the homeless population to embrace the opportunities at the campus.

“These are really good people who have had some unfortunate situations that have made them homeless,” he said.
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Old Posted Apr 21, 2010, 10:26 PM
tgannaway89 tgannaway89 is offline
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