The measure of a city is determined by how we treat our most vulnerable neighbors. Embarrassed, frustrated and determined, San Franciscans redefine their city by taking on the homelessness crisis with the trademarks of the SF culture: innovation and activism. Along the way, they also redefine what we mean by getting “street smart”.

ONLINE & EVENT VIEWS TO DATE

In addition, the series is currently being broadcast on television to 1,700,000 people
Thank you for the huge wave of love!

Support Lava Mae

Support At The Crossroads

Support Homeless Prenatal Program

Support Downtown Streets Team

Support Larkin SupportOsher

Support TNDC

Support Glide

Support The Navigation Center

THE STREET SMART PLEDGE

It’s up to all of us. This is a personal commitment to be part of the solution.

I PLEDGE:

  • to understand the causes of homelessness—it can happen to anyone
  • to refuse to accept the dehumanization of living on the street—just the lack of sleep is like torture
  • to engage in building communities that work for all of us—it’s pretty clear that otherwise they won’t work for any of us





Please keep me in the loop.

I acknowledge that my name will be publicly displayed in conjunction with the Pledge.

In the Press

Fast Company Co.EXIST These Short Films Show Inspiring Solutions To Homelessness
Independent film series on homelessness, screened for attendees at the [SOMA StrEat Food Truck] Park’s Super Bowl party
SFChronicle_SFGate_logos SF Chronicle says “punchy videos spread word about homelessness”
SFist_logo SFist says “inspiring mini-doc series about activists helping homeless San Franciscans”

DISTRIBUTION PARTNERS

soma-streatfood-park-200x80

CHARACTERS

Rob Gitin

As Executive Director and Co-Founder of At The Crossroads, Rob has been with ATC since its inception in 1997 and he’s got the gray hairs to prove it! Rob’s passion for working with underserved youth and leadership in the field earned him the GQ Leader Award in 2012. When he’s not working, you can find Rob at Starbucks, the Ferry Building Farmers Market, hanging with his niece and nephew, or hiking in the Headlands.

Doniece Sandoval

Doniece was inspired to build Lava Mae after hearing one woman, homeless in San Francisco, crying that she would never be clean. Lava Mae is scaling locally to provide 50,000 showers per year and unlock opportunities for those experiencing homelessness. Globally, Lava Mae has become a model for addressing access to water and sanitation – a basic human right – and for delivering dignity to marginalized populations.

Eli Parsons

When Eli Parsons lost his child to the custody of Child Protective Services, Homeless Prenatal Program and its Dependency Drug Court team stepped in to help the family achieve stability and remain intact. Today, his daughter is healthy and vivacious, and remains in his care. Eli joined the Homeless Prenatal Program as a Peer Mentor to help others in similar situations. “I am proof that this system works,” he says.

SHANNON GIOVACCHINI

Shannon Giovacchini

Shannon is an example of the ‘new face’ of homelessness as at one point, she owned multiple houses and through a series of tragic events and bad luck, lost everything. She’d given up on life and even considered suicide – and only decided against it because she couldn’t bring herself to traumatize the train conductor.  She then met a DST team member. She is now a manager at Downtown Streets Team and helps many other people in similar situations.

FOREST FEIN

Forest Fein

As the director of the Larkin Street Youth Mindfulness Program, Forest has developed a unique program of meditation and yoga that supports both the physical and mental health. Having discovered the power of meditation in 1999, he has personal experience of its transformative effects. Through this program, his students are given the opportunity to learn and develop skills that will support them as they step towards moving out of homelessness.

Kathy Wolf

Kathy Wolf

For many years Kathy Wolf struggled to find stable housing for her and her children, having to move frequently due to the high cost of rent. Kathy came to TNDC homeless, suffering from chronic asthma and depression and desperately looking for a solution to this cycle of unstable housing.  Kathy now lives in her own one bedroom apartment and thanks to the training and support, she is flourishing as the President of the Residents Association.

Rita Shimmin - GLIDE

Rita Shimmin

When Rita came to GLIDE over a decade ago, she knew she had fears, like everybody else, of those who might be radically different than herself. Her years at GLIDE brought her to the edge of her fears and back. Today Rita is celebrating those radical differences and sharing a commitment to unconditional love and respect for everyone, without exception. Rita has led GLIDE in the articulation of its foundational philosophies from which every branch of GLIDE functions.

Julie Leadbetter - San Francisco Navigation Center

Julie Leadbetter

As Director of the San Francisco Navigation Center, Julie’s charged with making “the system” work for the people who need it the most. A persistent advocate, she’s driven by the belief that most problems can be solved with a healthy dose of skepticism, a willingness to be creative, and a patient commitment to each other. In just one year, together with the incredible team at the Navigation Center, Julie has helped over 150 people to move off the streets into permanent, affordable housing.

Featured Organizations

LavaMae

Lava Mae

Given the appalling lack of bathrooms for those facing homelessness, we repurpose retired buses into showers and toilets on wheels to deliver hygiene and restore dignity. We believe that access to showers and toilets shouldn’t be a luxury, but rather a basic human right.

At the Crossroads

We reach out to youth on the streets who others have given up on and work with them to build healthy and fulfilling lives. We remove common barriers to service through nighttime street outreach and one-on-one counseling, shaping our support services around each individual’s needs.

Homeless Prenatal Program

Homeless Prenatal Program

By seizing the motivational opportunity created by pregnancy and parenthood, we join with families to help them recognize their strengths and trust in their capacity to transform their lives. We fundamentally believe that people can change and that they want a better life for their children.

Downtown Streets Team

Downtown Streets Team

Downtown Streets Team is ending homelessness by restoring the dignity and rebuilding the lives of unhoused men and women. Founded in 2005, Downtown Streets Team is now beautifying four Bay Area communities: Palo Alto, San Jose, Sunnyvale and San Rafael, with a fifth on the way. Our goal is to end homelessness in our lifetime.

Larkin Street Youth Services

Larkin Street Youth Services

With comprehensive youth service programs, Larkin Street Youth Services provides services to homeless youth between the ages of 12 and 24. Through a holistic, wrap around approach, we offer young people access to housing, education, employment and health services to help them rebuild their lives.

Osher Center for Integrative Medicine

UCSF Osher Center for Integrative Medicine

Our mission is to meet the need for a new model of care and daily living that promotes the healing and well-being of the whole person – mind, body and spirit – through Exceptional Care, Communication, Collaboration and Personal Sustainability.

Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation

Tenderloin Neighborhood Development Corporation

TNDC envisions diverse communities where people with low incomes can fulfill their potential. We provide affordable housing, building supportive communities and ensuring that our residents have access to services that enhance livability.

GLIDE

GLIDE is a radically inclusive, just and loving community in San Francisco – mobilized to alleviate suffering and break the cycles of poverty and marginalization.

CCSFSeal

Navigation Center

The Navigation Center is a one-stop complex, the first of its kind in the nation, where guests can sleep while they are routed into housing, rehabilitation, employment and other services crucial to keeping people off the streets. The center also documents the stories of folks staying at the Navigation Center, demystifying homelessness in the city of San Francisco.

CALL FOR CONTRIBUTORS

We’re looking for filmmakers, photographers and visual artists. Have a Street Smart story that you would like us to share?  Send it our way!
 
Need a topic?  We have come across more inspiring stories than we can capture — be part of bringing them to life through films, photos and graphics.

Kickstarter Supporters

The Kickstarter appeal did not succeed, but these people signed up to fund the films and, in so doing, breathed hope into our project.
 
Nico Deganello | Amy Novesky | Aimee Gamble Price | Kevin Sigliano | Susanne Sonderhoff | Maria Herminia Graterol | Cynthia Holladay Loosley | Oscar Gonzalez | Sergio | Bill Rivers | Preeti Mankar | Charles Brown | Kiran Goldman | Anne Senti-Willis | Alex Atkinson | Steven King | Paul Escobosa | Cielle Bragin | Flavia Nespatti | Pierre Keeley | Todd Schulte | Mark Kalow | Sean Connolly | Melinda Henning | Randy Levitch | Lawrence Shubert | Kristin Kaye | Joy Turrini | Marty Krasney | Justine Prestwich | Russ Hall | Alex Deve | Julie Campistron | Dave Richardson | Beth Wickerson | Elisa Jagerson | Alexander Besher | Samantha Bessega | Charles Catalano | Johnson Hor | Michael Margolis | Katie Vasicek

main-image-crop-300px

ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS

Although, Let’s Get Street Smart, is our first independent film series, the Micro-Documentaries team has been producing short films to advance humanitarian agendas since the end of 2009. Solution trailers of sorts, our films have inspired audiences to give online and US senators to move legislation forward. They have motivated employees to volunteer more and have encouraged Fortune 100 CEOs to commit to extraordinary social action. They have been shown on the NASDAQ jumbotron in Times Square, in the intimacy of the White House, on stage at Carnegie Hall, on the online pages of The New York Times, in film festivals, on television and on hundreds of thousands of screens around the world. Purposeful businesses and nonprofits like the Clinton Global Initiative, eBay’s Social Innovation team and the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital count on Micro-Documentaries to engage their audiences in a way that is authentic, affordable and actionable.

 

FILM CREDITS

MASHA KARPOUKHINA DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY JD LAFLEUR DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY ERIC FOINQUINOS & ALEX TURANOV MUSIC MASHA KARPOUKHINA EDITOR JD LAFLEUR EDITOR CLAIRE RATINON CREATIVE PRODUCER PREETI MANKAR DEB SENIOR DIRECTOR OF PRODUCTIONS KIRAN GOLDMAN JULIN DIRECTOR OF FIELD & POST PRODUCTION JACQUELINE COLAVOLPE PRODUCTION MANAGER AUORA AHSAN PRODUCTION MANAGER TODD SCHULTE GRAPHIC DESIGN ANDREW TOLVE CONTENT STRATEGY YULU PR DISTRIBUTION BETH WICKERSON WEB DEVELOPMENT AUORA AHSAN MEDIA MANAGEMENT SUSAN NELSON, ALICIA ANDERSON & ALEXANDER BESHER BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT PAMELA SIMPSON ACCOUNTING THERESA GONZALES ACCOUNTING CAROLE-LYNN GLASS FINANCE, HR & OPERATIONS ANDRE KARPOV CUNNINGHAM PLACE MURAL DESIGN ANDRE KARPOV, JUBAL STEDMAN & CAREY LAMPRECHT MURAL PAINTING 2006

DIRECTED BY NATASHA DEGANELLO GIRAUDIE

 

Additional Credits for Episode 1 : Radical Hospitality

STILL PHOTOGRAPHY BY LEAH FILLER SPECIAL THANKS TO RITUAL COFFEE ROASTERS

 

Additional Credits for Episode 2 : Unconditional Support

STILL PHOTOGRAPHY BY MONICA LAM AND ROB GITIN

 

Additional Credits for Episode 3 : Strengthening Families

STILL PHOTOGRAPHY BY JANET DELANEY

 

Additional Credits for Episode 4: Dignity of Work

SPECIAL THANKS TO PLUM ORGANICS

 

Additional Credits for Episode 5 : Yoga & Mindfulness

SPECIAL THANKS TO SEATREK AND 25TH & CLEMENT PRODUCE MARKET STILL PHOTOGRAPHY BY MIKE SHORT

 

Additional Credits for Episode 6 : Housing with Support

SPECIAL THANKS TO JULES MAEGHT GALLERY

KEEP IN TOUCH

 

This series is dedicated to the loving memory of Christopher Rossi.
Talented designer, life-loving friend, dedicated son.

The streets took you away from us, but your bright, warm light continues to shine in our hearts.

And in honor of Ingrid who used to sit in front of the Ateneo de Caracas.
The streets introduced us to you and showed us the beautiful person behind the stereotype.

 

#SFHomelessProject