Most people who are experiencing homelessness are receiving some type of governmental benefits. For example, some have SSI/SSDI (disability), some have GR (general relief), some receive CalFresh/SNAP (food stamps), or all three. Receiving these benefits is crucial to their survival and many keep them if their income stays low enough to qualify. Each person has a different maximum income threshold, depending on the amount received.
Before a candidate begins training, each person must fill out a brief questionnaire that provides this information to WITHOUT SHELTER. This is KEY to our model because we do not want them to lose their benefits while working with us.
WITHOUT SHELTER is a nonprofit social enterprise and self-sustaining. 50% of each sale goes toward paying commission to our Street Vendors and a large portion goes toward their housing rent. Due to the high costs of housing in the City of Los Angeles, the minimum gross sales quota for housing placement is $2000/per Contractor/Street Vendor, per month.
Housing is paid through the sale of each item, through the business, rather than by the individual. Doing so, eliminates all barriers that would otherwise prevent a homeless individual from obtaining housing, because WITHOUT SHELTER has purchased it for them, with money they earned. The Contractor is now housed and their reported income is low enough to maintain their government benefits.