Q&Q With Community Supported Shelters


How long have you been in business and what drives you to serve our community?

Community Supported Shelters (CSS) has operated alternative shelters for the unhoused in Eugene for just over a decade. Creating intentional communities is our focus. When individuals have a network of support, they are more likely to move from just surviving to thriving. CSS is one solution to the homeless crisis and we look forward to working with other shelters, businesses, and our government officials to develop realistic solutions to support those in crisis.

Are there new programs or initiatives you are investing in or providing for our community? 

In addition to providing temporary shelter for the unhoused, we are in the midst of creating a workforce development program. This new program will allow us to support our unhoused clients in developing new skills, building confidence, and eventually reentering the workforce. This starts with encouraging clients to volunteer with our staff in various roles, including maintenance, kitchen, laundry, and peer support work. Once have developed the skillset necessary to perform the functions of the job, they’ll be able to apply for a paid, part time position within our organization. Our goal is to support clients by providing training, encouragement, and a living wage so they will be more successful when they exit our program. 

What is it about Eugene/Springfield that you enjoy the most or what do you enjoy most about what you do?

I absolutely love taking community members on tours of our Safe Spots. Talking about how our organization helps people provides a limited amount of information; the best way to truly understand what we do is to see it firsthand!

Tell us about some of the partnerships or success stories you may have with area businesses.

We’ve been quite fortunate to partner with many local businesses since our creation a decade ago. The partnerships and success stories are numerous and span across almost every business sector. 

How has your collaboration with the Chamber impacted your business or how do you hope to partner?

Our collaboration with the Chamber has enabled us to begin building our own workforce development program for unhoused clients. We’re excited to partner with other businesses to expand options for volunteerism, on-the-job training, skills development, and mentorship opportunities for our clients.

How can the business community support or engage with you?

Sign up for our newsletter, request a tour, follow us on social media, volunteer your time, make a donation (every dollar makes a difference!). Above all, we highly recommend you learn about the causes of homelessness, how local policies impact our unhoused neighbors, and how your business can be a part of solving this crisis.

Published On: October 9, 2023
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