Antioch Shelter Rehab Project

$340 of $150,000 goal

Raised by 7 people in 8 months
Complete rehab and renovation needs and expand the number of beds at our Don Brown Shelter in Antioch in order to help more people escape homelessness!

About Don Brown Shelter:

Anka’s Don Brown Shelter in Antioch, CA is the sole provider in the area for emergency shelter for homeless men and women who have a severe and persistent mental illness. The shelter currently has 20 beds, housing 12 men and 8 women, and is open 24/7, year-round.

Every person served at the Don Brown Shelter receives a bed, safe place to store their belongings, and three meals each day. They are also connected to vital services, such as: mental health and addiction screening and treatment services, group therapy, clothing, laundry and toiletries, support and connection to benefits, housing, employment assistance, and a variety of other supportive services.

Shelter exterior view

The Don Brown Shelter was named after Anka's former Director of Homeless Services, Donald Brown, following his defeat to Cancer in 2004. In his ten years with Anka, Don Brown, a Vietnam Veteran, set the industry standard for homeless outreach and considered the Antioch Shelter his home base. To this day he is considered one of Anka's most inspiring and beloved employees.

The man, the myth, the legend: Donald Brown!

Many of the shelter’s clients formerly resided in Contra Costa County, while a large number migrated here from San Francisco, Marin, Alameda, and Sonoma Counties as a result of spiking home prices from gentrification. Because of the Don Brown shelter, thousands of homeless people have been able to work through and in many cases overcome their homeless condition. In the first nine months of 2017 alone, for example, 40% of clients achieved permanent housing on exit. The shelter is widely acknowledged as a vital resource in Contra Costa County and is the sole provider in the area for emergency shelter for homeless men and women who have a severe and persistent mental illness.

The Don Brown Shelter is at capacity every night, all year round. Many homeless people in need are on a waiting list to get in. In colder months the number of people in need only  increases. In fact, there are not enough available beds to meet the increasing levels of homelessness in east Contra Costa County, which saw an increase of 32% in 2016.

Renovating the Don Brown Shelter will achieve two very important goals: it will 1) make a significant impact on Contra Costa County’s homeless problem by increasing shelter beds from 20 to 32 (a 60% increase) and serving dozens more homeless each year, while 2) modernizing the facility for long-term sustainability and the safety and comfort of clients and staff.  

We have partnered with HomeAid, a non-profit organization specializing in building and renovating homeless shelters and housing, to renovate and expand the Don Brown Shelter. HomeAid has agreed to cover half of the costs to renovate the shelter (a total cost of $250,000 + dollars) and Anka will need to match the other half - which leads us to fundraising on our own and asking the community to help! So far we have raised $48,000 in grants and donations (not captured in Go-Fund Me).

Common area where therapy and groups are held.

A bed and locker to store personal belongings.

We know you share our concern about the rising levels of homelessness in our community – that’s why we ask for your support. Because we are a 501 c 3 non-profit organization, donating is easy and tax-deductible! 

About Anka:
Anka Behavioral Health, Inc. (Anka) is a non-profit organization with the mission to eliminate the impact of behavioral health problems for all people. In operation since 1973, Anka provides caring, dependable, and professional behavioral health and social service programs that serve nearly 15,000 individuals each year. Please go to our website at www.ankabhi.org for more information.
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We thought we would share some success stories about some of the clients that the Don Brown Shelter has helped over the years. Here's one:

Tom is a 55 year old veteran with bi-polar disorder and severe depression. Homeless since 1998, Tom lived on the streets of Antioch with no income, health coverage, or any type of benefits. He cycled in and out of the Don Brown Shelter for many years and was very difficult to engage. In 2010 Tom’s adult sons, also both diagnosed with severe mental health issues, became homeless and started coming in and out of the Don Brown Shelter. It was around this time that Tom finally started engaging in the services the shelter offered – he and his sons attended group and individual therapy and substance use treatment groups and began taking an active role in their case management. By 2011, Tom was finally linked to SSI and Medi-Cal benefits and by early 2012 he moved into a permanent supportive housing apartment. Tom’s sons were placed into the San Francisco Job Corps, a program administered by the U.S. Department of Labor that offers free education and vocational training to youth ages 16 to 24.

To this day Tom remains housed in permanent supportive housing and stable on his medications. Both of his sons have established careers in trades that they learned at Job Corps. All three of them are doing well and still check in with the staff at Don Brown Shelter on a regular basis and let them know about their progress.

The Don Brown Shelter didn’t give up on Tom! Please allow us to help more people in need by expanding and renovating our shelter.
Tom, Veteran & Don Brown Shelter Client
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$340 of $150,000 goal

Raised by 7 people in 8 months
Funds raised will benefit:
Anka Behavioral Health Incorporated
  Certified Charity
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Concord, CA
EIN: 942209679
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