The truth is, MAAP is made for emergencies. We work at the intersection of multiple emergencies — homelessness, the affordable housing crisis, the overdose crisis, and now a global health pandemic. Through our years of doing this work we’ve witnessed how these emergencies are amplified and often ignored when you are Black. Our country’s history of structural racism, from slavery, to redlining, to police violence, to mass incarceration, are killing our Black neighbors. We are grateful that our work has the ability to support people; especially Black people, who disproportionately experience homelessness, through such crises. But, it’s not enough so we keep pushing and working for solutions that center the needs of unhoused people. 

We do this despite our more than modest size. We are creative, cost-effective, and we challenge ourselves to put in place every best practice we can. During the COVID-19 crisis we have continued to look to community members experiencing homelessness to understand their challenges and the solutions. They have been so clear that we are essential to their survival. 

When MAAP opened on Tuesday, March 17th our operations were outside. Our Executive Director Cassie knew almost everyone who came that day. Many of the people who helped make the plan were there to see it in action and to lend a hand. Quickly, the number of people who turned to MAAP for support grew. 

As of May 31, with your support we have been able to do what no other organization does:

  • Maintain our regular hours on Tuesday and Thursday, making 1123 (no-contact!) connections. People are accessing survival supplies, clothing and hygiene supplies, using our outdoor sink, charging their phones, using our phone and laptop, getting support to access telemedicine appointments and apply for stimulus benefits, sharing resources and accessing vital information about COVID-19 safety, symptoms, and testing; and available existing resources.  
  • Expand to provide street and shelter outreach to over 369 community members. (Yes, we expanded our services!) 
  • Distribute: 5,592 tents, tarps, sleeping bags, yoga mats, backpacks and other survival supplies; 863 hygiene kits, menstrual hygiene kits, masks, and hand sanitizer; Shoes and clothing to 586 people; 1098 nutritious lunches as well as additional sandwiches and snacks to-go; 8 handmade hand washing stations made and placed in locations where community members stay without access to running water 
  • Organize with unhoused community members and our allies to advocate for the implementation of solutions to meet their immediate basic needs (water, food, shelter, and bathrooms) during a global pandemic when they are increasingly essential to public health.  
  • Stick around. MAAP serves over 2000 people a year and that number is only growing in the wake of COVID-19. While we continue to face new hurdles every day, we are more certain in our mission than ever. We’ve been here for 75 years and MAAP participants know we will continue to be here.  

MAAP is essential. Our Board Vice Chair often says our budget is “so modest people can’t imagine how we can do it.” We now know it is too modest. What worried us on March 17 worries us on June 17. We can’t have a single person staffing the only organization providing material aid, resources, advocacy, and an organizing home to our community. We’ve developed new partners and have new policy opportunities to pursue. We aren’t far off but we aren’t quite there. We need to raise $15,000 by June 30 so that we can commit to hiring a second full-time staff person to better serve our mission. 

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The Essential Campaign: Raising $15,000 in FY20 to hire MAAP a second team member

by Material Aid and Advocacy Program


The truth is, MAAP is made for emergencies. We work at the intersection of multiple emergencies — homelessness, the affordable housing crisis, the overdose crisis, and now a global health pandemic. Through our years of doing this work we’ve witnessed how these emergencies are amplified and often ignored when you are Black. Our country’s history of structural racism, from slavery, to redlining, to police violence, to mass incarceration, are killing our Black neighbors. We are grateful that our work has the ability to support people; especially Black people, who disproportionately experience homelessness, through such crises. But, it’s not enough so we keep pushing and working for solutions that center the needs of unhoused people. 

We do this despite our more than modest size. We are creative, cost-effective, and we challenge ourselves to put in place every best practice we can. During the COVID-19 crisis we have continued to look to community members experiencing homelessness to understand their challenges and the solutions. They have been so clear that we are essential to their survival. 

When MAAP opened on Tuesday, March 17th our operations were outside. Our Executive Director Cassie knew almost everyone who came that day. Many of the people who helped make the plan were there to see it in action and to lend a hand. Quickly, the number of people who turned to MAAP for support grew. 

As of May 31, with your support we have been able to do what no other organization does:

  • Maintain our regular hours on Tuesday and Thursday, making 1123 (no-contact!) connections. People are accessing survival supplies, clothing and hygiene supplies, using our outdoor sink, charging their phones, using our phone and laptop, getting support to access telemedicine appointments and apply for stimulus benefits, sharing resources and accessing vital information about COVID-19 safety, symptoms, and testing; and available existing resources.  
  • Expand to provide street and shelter outreach to over 369 community members. (Yes, we expanded our services!) 
  • Distribute: 5,592 tents, tarps, sleeping bags, yoga mats, backpacks and other survival supplies; 863 hygiene kits, menstrual hygiene kits, masks, and hand sanitizer; Shoes and clothing to 586 people; 1098 nutritious lunches as well as additional sandwiches and snacks to-go; 8 handmade hand washing stations made and placed in locations where community members stay without access to running water 
  • Organize with unhoused community members and our allies to advocate for the implementation of solutions to meet their immediate basic needs (water, food, shelter, and bathrooms) during a global pandemic when they are increasingly essential to public health.  
  • Stick around. MAAP serves over 2000 people a year and that number is only growing in the wake of COVID-19. While we continue to face new hurdles every day, we are more certain in our mission than ever. We’ve been here for 75 years and MAAP participants know we will continue to be here.  

MAAP is essential. Our Board Vice Chair often says our budget is “so modest people can’t imagine how we can do it.” We now know it is too modest. What worried us on March 17 worries us on June 17. We can’t have a single person staffing the only organization providing material aid, resources, advocacy, and an organizing home to our community. We’ve developed new partners and have new policy opportunities to pursue. We aren’t far off but we aren’t quite there. We need to raise $15,000 by June 30 so that we can commit to hiring a second full-time staff person to better serve our mission.