This country just confirmed Donald Trump, a self proclaimed billionaire, as the 45th president of the United States. The media has also reported that President Trump’s cabinet picks have a combined wealth of more than $14 billion (CBS News). Yet in the bay area and beyond, we see what appears to be a growing number of visible homeless encampments along the freeways and streets. How often do you feel saddened and concerned by this? Do you wonder what role you can take in your community and workplace to address the severity of homelessness in your local neighborhoods? Do you sometimes find yourself numb or desensitized to people you see living on the street or asking for help, or feel helpless in being able to support change? We interview a local leader, Kristie Fairchild, who directs a community-based organization that addresses the needs of homeless people at the local level, a neighborhood model in San Francisco. We hear innovative practices and skills at both the personal and organizational levels that increase our capacity to support dignity, empathy and compassion when addressing the needs of homeless population in our neighborhoods.
Since 2003, Kristie Fairchild has been the Executive Director of North Beach Citizens, a community-based non-profit organization focused on addressing the needs of homeless and low income people living in North Beach. In 2005, she was appointed by Mayor Gavin Newsom to serve on the Implementation Council of San Francisco’s Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness. Kristie has been recognized as an innovative leader by the City and County of San Francisco, California State Senate, and California State Assembly. In 2014, she was awarded the Jefferson Award for Public Service and was the Women’s History Month Honoree by San Francisco City Hall.