Supportive Housing

Over the last five decades of developing and managing communities for low income and formerly homeless families, seniors and people with disabilities, EAH has always found that residents are able to maintain a stable home and their overall wellbeing when the community includes supportive services. EAH thus partners with experienced service providers who understand each community’s needs and offer everything from addiction counseling and healthy food programs to financial literacy and job training to our residents.

EAH Housing is working to be a part of the solution to ending homelessness and the lack of affordable rental housing in Hawaii and California. Along with providing housing for formerly homeless Hawaiians, EAH participates as a member of Hawaii State Senator Suzie Chun Oakland’s Housing and Homeless Task Force that meets monthly to explore innovative housing designs and to develop legislation to generate funding for housing that serves low-income and homeless individuals and families.

EAH Housing President and CEO Mary Murtagh cemented the company’s commitment to ending homelessness when she joined EAH in 1986, bringing with her extensive experience in supportive housing. This includes her work on the financing and renovation of the Arlington Hotel, a 174-unit innovative project undertaken jointly by St. Vincent de Paul (SVDP), an organization serving Bay Area homeless, and the San Francisco Department of Health.  This award-winning development was one of the first "sober" residential complexes in the nation for recovering alcoholics. The project was extremely successful – until operations ended in 2013, 63% of the occupants had made it through recovery and moved out to a better life.  “The positive impact this project had on the lives of the chronically homeless was immeasurable,” Ms. Murtagh said.

EAH Housing currently serves residents who were formerly homeless or were at risk of homelessness at 30% of its managed properties, and is engaged with municipalities on how to provide the successful Housing First model in areas where we work.

One of several successful EAH supportive housing models is the Hamilton Meadows Transitional and Permanent Supportive Housing Program. EAH joined the Marin Partnership to End Homelessness to develop and manage 83 units of transitional housing and 18 Project-Based Section 8 units at the former Hamilton Air Field in Novato. The first families moved into their homes in September 2003.  More than 200 formerly homeless and at-risk individuals, including more than 80 children, currently live at Hamilton Meadows after being referred by seven local community service/shelter organizations, and more than 1,000 have been sheltered since EAH joined the partnership. Together, these organizations provide services to assist residents in moving into stable, permanent housing:
Center for Domestic Peace (home of Marin Abused Women's Services) - provides 24/7 English and Spanish domestic violence hotlines, safety planning, emergency shelter, transitional housing, drop-in support groups, domestic violence response teams, court accompaniment, classes and training for men and women to learn how to stop their violence, community education,  prevention programs for youth and adults.

Center Point Inc. - supports clients in recovery through continuing care and aftercare services. Center Point offers a wide range of treatment options and social services, including assessment and evaluation, outpatient and residential programs, transitional housing, permanent housing, job training, vocational programs, case management, special women’s services, and programs that serve women with children.
Integrated Community Services - provide community-based services for individuals with disabilities in the areas of employment, housing, recreation, information, and referral.

Homeward Bound of Marin - operates 14 programs for men, women and children experiencing homelessness in three main divisions:  Family Services, Adult Services and Mental Health Services.
Lifehouse - opens doors of opportunity and independence to individuals with developmental disabilities through community integration, life-skill training, advocacy, referral and information.

Marin AIDS Project (M.A.P.) - helps people with severe needs, people who are profoundly ill and people for whom daily life is a continuous struggle.  MAP provides medical case management, homebase health care, benefits advocacy, mental health evaluation, counseling and medication monitoring, needle exchange, emergency financial assistance, prescription assistance, transportation, volunteer services, educational/community forums, entertainment and recreation.

Ritter Center - helps the homeless and very low-income residents of Marin – individuals and families – stabilize their lives by offering a number of social services: case management, transitional housing primary health care, specialty care coordination, mental health therapy and substance abuse counseling through our 330h Federally Qualified Health Center; supplementary food  and clothing; emergency financial assistance; showers, laundry, and restroom facilities; general delivery mail and voicemail.

Merian Oakes, EAH property manager for Hamilton Meadows, said the transitional program has changed the lives of hundreds of residents. She has seen recovering addicts turn their lives around with the help of service providers and a place to live. Our residents are able to secure a job and an income, then move out within a few years. Some Hamilton residents move to other EAH communities in the area, including the affordable transit-oriented development Drake’s Way and a community built specifically for the developmentally disabled, Larkspur Isle.
“In terms of monitoring how residents are doing – our system at Hamilton is that residents are required by their service providers and case managers to save up so they go over finances once a week,” Oakes said.  “It really helps residents who have been homeless and on the streets, many of them for 20 years, get back on their feet. I believe the services are vital to the success of any particular individual. Most new residents don’t feel very confident about themselves at first so it’s nice to have someone have your back.”

Markham Plaza in San Jose, CA
Markham Plaza I and II, San Jose, CA
Another EAH success with supportive housing has been at Markham Plaza, a 305-unit SRO complex in San Jose, through the 10 Project-Based Section 8 vouchers for formerly homeless individuals. EAH Resource Coordinator Leonora Padilla excels at securing partnerships from within the city and county to provide an incredible array of services to the residents at Markham Plaza, including delivery of more than 50,000 pounds of food a year from Second Harvest Food Bank.

Some of the many other onsite services include but are not limited to:
  • Free flu shots administered by Walgreens
  • Food preparation class with a nutritionist and onsite food pantry from Second Harvest Food Bank on the first and third of every month
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Progam (SNAP) application assistance and cookbooks in multiple languages from CalFresh representative
  • Health wellness checks from ProHealth
  • Natural disaster preparedness with the Red Cross
  • Chiropractor every Monday
  • Healthcare enrollment assistance
  • Coming soon: free haircuts from a local cosmetology school
  • Coming soon: job search training including resume and interview assistance
Buckelew Programs
Creekwood – Fairfax, CA – Buckelew Programs
The EAH Housing partnership with Buckelew Programs also emphasizes the importance of combining affordable housing with strong supportive services. Buckelew Programs provides a range of supported living situations for adults with mental illness, many of whom experienced homelessness. The majority of the clients live in apartments that are owned or leased by Buckelew, where they receive daily or sometimes weekly visits from staff to assist them to live semi-independently. Clients who don’t need daily visits by staff still benefit from supportive services as they increase their self-management capabilities and move into their own houses or apartments. EAH and Buckelew have been working together for more than 16 years both on development, by building Olive Ave Apartments and Creekwood (Buckelew Housing) and by managing five Buckelew buildings. EAH maintains the buildings and manages all compliance issues with different government agencies.

Cathedral Gardens in Oakland, CA
In early 2014, EAH Housing was awarded private funding to design a mental health wellness program for culturally and economically diverse residents selected to reside in the newly built Cathedral Gardens affordable housing community in downtown Oakland, CA. Cathedral Gardens adds 100 income-restricted units and serves as a symbol of hope to an area in dire need of affordable housing and revitalization. This project has received enormous community support, and support from the City of Oakland, Oakland Housing Authority to revitalize an otherwise forgotten site. All residents are low-income, and a percentage qualify for units set aside for the formerly homeless, those with HIV, and individuals with mental health challenges. Partnerships with East Bay Innovations, AIDS Project East Bay, and Alameda County Behavioral Health Care Services help provide social services for residents. The Resource Coordinator will be key to the success of this program and will be expected to be visible in the community, gain the respect, buy-in and support of the residents and partner service providers, create a program-rich environment, understand the dynamics of the surrounding community, connect residents to services, plan community events, administer surveys and track attendance, and provide each family with a Resource Guide and other tools. This person will create a calendar for monthly outreach (e.g., community meetings, newsletters, social events, classes) to provide opportunities for residents to get involved in their community, get to know one another and form affinity group.

Willow Housing in Menlo Park, CA
Willow Housing in Menlo Park was developed in partnership with Core Affordable Housing, EAH Housing and the Department of Veteran Affairs. Willow Housing provides permanent, service-enriched housing to veterans transitioning out of homelessness or at imminent risk of homelessness. The facility operates year-round and has 60 residential units and community gathering areas. The apartment community offers 54 studio units and five one-bedroom units for individuals with income levels of 30 and 40 percent of the area median income (AMI) or below, and one manager’s unit. Thirty five (35) units are set aside for homeless veterans that will receive project-based vouchers through HUD VASH (Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing). The remaining non-VASH units are set aside (not restricted) for homeless veterans and veterans at-risk of becoming homeless. Willow Housing provides a supportive environment for formerly homeless and at-risk veterans to receive a comprehensive array of support and community services that will help them maintain their housing and increase their self-sufficiency within the community. Ultimately, the goal is to provide and assist the veterans with the tools needed to gain economic and social well-being and stability. Supportive services are geared toward the unique needs and experiences of veterans, and services include case management, access to neighborhood and community resources, and on-site recreational activities.

The following is a non-exhaustive list of some properties EAH owns or manages that provide housing to the formerly homeless and residents who were at risk of homelessness in California and Hawaii:

Cathedral Gardens
Delmas Park
Duncan Green Court
Fairfax Vest Pocket
Hamilton Meadows I
Hamilton Meadows II
Imi Ikena Apartments
Isabel Cook
Kahului Town Terrace
Kings Valley Senior Apts
Markham I
Markham II
Nanaikeola Senior Apt
Presidio El Camino
Roger Greene Apartments
San Clemente Place
Villages of Moa' e Kū - Ph1
Villages of Moa' e Kū - Ph2
West Marin Ecumenical
Willow Housing (veterans)