Every Child Deserves a Home



  • Hamilton Family Center is established by Hamilton United Methodist Church as the first family homeless shelter in San Francisco. Located on Waller Street in the Haight Ashbury District, the shelter operates nightly from 8:00 pm to 8:00 am and is staffed entirely by church volunteers.


  • Hamilton Family Center is incorporated as a nonprofit separate from Hamilton United Methodist Church, and the first paid staff are hired.


  • The shelter begins operating a day program, allowing parents with small children to remain in the shelter.


  • Community health outreach workers provide health care and follow-up services on-site This program eventually becomes a separate agency, Homeless Prenatal Program.


  • Mental health clinicians are hired to provide therapy to children in San Francisco’s homeless family shelters. By 1997, this program becomes a separate agency, Homeless Children’s Network.


  • HFC is a founding member agency of the Family Shelter Alliance.
  • Partnering with the National Parks Service, HFC opens a cottage in the Marin Headlands for homeless children to be able to experience nature and the outdoors. This program eventually becomes a separate agency, Home Away from Homelessness.


  • HFC purchases land to build transitional housing for homeless families.


  • HFC opens a Housing & Aftercare Program with funding from the US Dept. of Housing and Urban Development to provide housing assistance to homeless families.


  • Hamilton Family Transitional Housing Program opens at 1631 Hayes Street.
  • Hamilton Family Center receives a “Best Practices” Award from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.


  • Hamilton Family Residences opens at 260 Golden Gate Avenue with a capacity to provide shelter to 150 people each night for up to 3 months.
  • The original Waller Street Shelter becomes Hamilton Family Emergency Center and continues to provide emergency overnight and 60-day shelter for up to 70 people nightly.


  • HFC begins providing permanent supportive housing services to formerly homeless families, extremely low income seniors and single adults with disabilities in the 74-unit Dudley Apartments at 172 6th Street in partnership with Mercy Housing.


  • The Schwab Foundation grants HFC’s Housing & Aftercare Program two $75,000 grants for a pilot project to move further towards a Housing First approach to serving homeless families.


  • First Avenues – Housing Solutions for Families is launched to focus on homelessness prevention and rapid re-housing.
  • Hamilton Family Emergency Center moves to 260 Golden Gate Avenue, bringing the emergency overnight shelter and the 60-day shelter program under the same roof as the Hamilton Family Residences.


  • Hamilton Family Center joins with Catholic Charities, Homeless Prenatal Program and Compass Family Services in the Family Eviction Prevention Collaborative, or FEPCO, working to prevent homelessness by providing rental assistance to families in order to avoid eviction and helps those in shelters or marginal housing find permanent homes.
  • The National Alliance to End Homelessness honors Hamilton Family Center with a national award recognizing “…strides in utilizing the Housing First strategy to end homelessness for countless families in the Bay Area.”


  • The Hamilton Family Transitional Housing Program enters into partnership with San Francisco’s Office of Collaborative Justice to prioritize transitional housing for families participating in San Francisco County’s Dependency Drug Court or Behavioral Health Court.
  • Mutual of America awards its highest national honor to the Family Eviction Prevention Collaborative, FEPCO, for its work to prevent homelessness.


  • Hamilton Family Center receives two major grant awards through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to provide rental subsidies to 135 additional families over three years in collaboration with four partner agencies.


  • Hamilton Family Center enters historic first contract with Office and Professional Employees International Union, OPEIU Local 3, representing our direct services workforce throughout the agency.
  • First Avenues opens its own offices at 255 Hyde Street, San Francisco.


  • Diane Luther is hired in June as Executive Director.
  • Salesforce.com founder Marc Benioff and wife Lynne Benioff donate $850,000 First Avenues, to which the Mayor’s Homeless Fund added another $483,167 to house more than 60 families.


  • Hamilton Family Center adopts a new Mission statement, Core Values Statement and Five-Year Strategic Goals.


  • Hamilton Family Center holds first annual Spring into Service event.
  • Jeff Kositsky is named Hamilton Family Center’s eighth Executive Director.


  • Hamilton Family Center partners with The San Francisco Unified School District to help at least 75 families who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness find or maintain their housing for the school year. Google donates $1 million to help with these efforts.
  • Hamilton Family Center awarded new contract with the Department of Veteran’s Affairs to provide family-focused Supportive Services to veteran families over a three year period from October 2014 – October 2017.


  • Hamilton Family Center expands its First Avenues program to new location in downtown Oakland.