• In 2013 Catholic Charities provided shelter and housing for over 1800 homeless men, women and children
  • The average age of residents in our family shelter is 12 years old
  • Over 500 children and youth under the age of 24 called Catholic Charities home last year
  • For every child we housed, 4 more were on our shelter waiting list
  • 1 in 50 children in the US are homeless (~1.5 million children total)
  • In California, less than 25% of homeless children graduate high school
  • The National Center on Family Homelessness ranks California 48th out of 50 for extent of child homelessness (on a scale where 50 is the worst in the country).
  • Homeless children get sick twice as often, go hungry more than twice as often, and have six times as many speech problems
  • 1 in 28 children in California do not know where they will get their next meal.
  • For a Sonoma County family receiving CalFresh (formerly food stamps), the average monthly benefit is $162 per person, or $1.80 per meal.  
  • The average monthly amount California residents receive through WIC, a food subsidy program for pregnant mothers and their young children, is now down to $36.81/month.
  • In the last year, the number of families who are eligible for CalFresh in Sonoma County has increased by 46%.
  • 33% of Sonoma County's school-age children were eligible for free or reduced-price lunches this year.
  • Local free-summer-lunch programs planned for a 93% increase in demand this year as compared to 5 years ago.


  • Sonoma County is facing its highest rate of joblessness in 26 years, with local unemployment rates reaching 9.9% in September 2009.  
  • 27,000 people are out of work in Sonoma County - 70% more than were unemployed this time last year.  
  • Job offers at local day labor sites, a resource many homeless parents depend on as they search for permanent employment, have declined by more than 60% in the last year.   


  • 92% of homeless mothers have been severely physically or sexually assaulted at some point in their lives, many when they were children.
  • In the most recent homeless count, 57.5% of homeless people surveyed in Santa Rosa were staying on the street, in emergency shelters, in transitional housing, or in places not meant for human habitation.  
  • 31% of people who are homeless in Santa Rosa report that a combination of illness or disability and illness-related stresses on income contributed to their homelessness.
  • 35% of people who are homeless in Santa Rosa have some form of physical or medical disability.
  • Nearly 500 people in Santa Rosa are chronically homeless, which means they are homeless, disabled, and have either been continuously homeless for one year, or they have had at least four episodes of homelessness in the past three years.
  • The Betty Kwan Chinn Day Center provides emergency day shelter, transitional housing, and comprehensive support services for the 500 children and adults who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness in Humboldt County
  • In addition to the Day Center in Eureka, Catholic Charities operates three emergency overnight shelters and a day center in Santa Rosa, which collectively serve 3,000 homeless children and adults each year.


  • In California, a minimum-wage full-time worker earns 33% of what they would need to afford a 2-bedroom fair-market-rate apartment.
  • In California, 184% of TANF benefits would need to be spent on rent to afford a 2-bedroom apartment at fair market rent.
  • Average rent rates for a 2-bedroom, 1-bathroom apartment in Sonoma County have risen 8% in the last year, pricing out many low-income families now sheltered by the Family Support Center.


  • Sonoma County lenders foreclosed on nearly 7 homes per day from July-Sept 2009 - that's nearly 50 per week.
  • At the end of the third quarter of 2009, lenders had foreclosed on 585 homes and sent out 1282 notices of default in Sonoma County.