We invite society’s most vulnerable members to become its most valued. Our innovative approach to work is not just practical – it is inspirational.

Our workforce development programs leverage and uplift the unique skill set and wisdom, within our community, to create employment opportunities in the area of public stewardship. HPF partners with local government and city agencies to identify some of San Francisco’s most emergent needs, particularly at the intersection of extreme poverty (homelessness), addiction, incarceration, and mental health. HPF prioritizes hiring San Francisco residents and formerly incarcerated individuals, who utilize their most challenging life experiences to rebuild their emotional intelligence, compassion, and resilience.

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BART and SFMTA Ambassadors

This innovative program is changing the rider experience for wheelchair riders, families with strollers and travelers to Civic Center and Powell Street stations. HPF Ambassadors monitor elevators and elevator platforms to ensure the elevators remain safe, clean, and in working order for all BART/SFMTA patrons. The first Ambassadors began in April 2018, but earned such excellent customer feedback that BART voted to continue the program through November 2019. Since the beginning of the program, instances of urination, defecation, drug use and assaults in the Powell and Civic Center elevators have dramatically declined to zero.

“These workers are from the community, they’re helping our patrons, and they’re improving the quality of life in our stations.”
— Paula Fraser, Assistant Chief Transportation Officer, BART

Civic Center Commons Stewards

Like BART elevators, San Francisco’s Civic Center has historically been associated with open air drug use and sales, individuals in psychiatric crisis, and homelessness, so that the heart of our City’s civic center often felt scary and menacing. HPF’s Civic Center Commons (CCC) Stewards maintain a reassuring presence that ensures the safety and cleanliness of the area between San Francisco City Hall and the United Nations Plaza. HPF’s CCC Stewards have successfully transformed the energy and activities within the Civic Center Commons. As a result of their efforts, the area now enjoys interactive exhibits from the Exploratorium, the Asian Art Museum, local artists, and state-of-the-art playgrounds bustling with children.

“The guys here keep it safe for everybody. We’re like tour guides, we help people with directions. We help save lives. I give references to people that are homeless... I’m a resource guy for the people out here.”
— Terrance, Civic Center Ambassador

Pit Stops: San Francisco and Los Angeles

The Pit Stop programs provide clean and safe public toilets, sinks, used needle receptacles and dog waste stations at 23 Pit Stop locations in the city’s most impacted neighborhoods. Pit Stop Monitors stand outside of the units to ensure they are used for their intended purpose – that users are safe and bathrooms are clean and in working order. With their presence and attending eye, monitors bring a sense of comfort, safety and cleanliness to the streets. Our standard is that the units must be cleaned so that any reasonable person would be comfortable allowing their 3-year old daughter to use the unit unaccompanied.

The success of San Francisco’s Pit Stop program caught the attention of the City of Los Angeles. HPF launched the Los Angeles Pit Stop program in 2018 in partnership with Five Keys Schools. There are currently 12 Pit Stop locations in Los Angeles, including Skid Row, Venice Beach, Downtown LA, as well as several encampments near freeway underpasses nd other isolated areas.

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San Francisco Clean

San Francisco Clean (SFC) crews work alongside Public Works to do a deep clean of the City’s most filthy areas, every day. The SFC crew collects needles and debris, sweeps sidewalks, clears excrement, removes graffiti, empties overflowing trash cans, and removes large bulky items dumped in the Tenderloin, Bayview, and SOMA neighborhoods. The SF Clean Crew is more than just a cleaning crew; they are ambassadors and stewards to the communities they maintain.

SF Clean inspires a sense of pride and ownership among residents of these communities. The pride that the crew takes in their work energizes the community to engage differently, cultivating a shared sense of place and stewardship for their surroundings. Like all HPF workforce programs, SF Clean teams earn training, emotional support and social skills along with their paychecks.