Humble Design Expands to San Diego to Combat Homelessness

Jun 27, 2018

Humble Design Fueled by U-Haul is taking its proven track record in the fight against homelessness to the streets of San Diego.

It will be the fourth U.S. market for the Detroit-born nonprofit, which provides donated home furnishings as well as decorating services to help families and veterans transitioning out of homelessness.

Humble Design has served more than 980 families since its benevolent mission began in 2009. It will assist its 1,000th family in August.

With the aid of national partner U-Haul, Humble Design has expanded since 2017 to include chapters in Chicago and Seattle. San Diego operations will begin in September.

8,500 Homeless in San Diego

“The homeless situation poses a huge crisis with more than 8,500 homeless individuals in San Diego,” stated Treger Strasberg, co-CEO and founder of Humble Design.

“The pricey housing market is a tough battle to overcome for those who wish to transition out of homeless shelters. For those who obtain housing, the next obstacle is furnishing their home. In many cases, families end up sleeping on the floor in any empty apartment. A significant portion of individuals placed in housing in San Diego return to the homeless shelter within 12 months. But we intend to help change that.”

The success rate of families paired with Humble Design is staggering. Only 1 percent return to homelessness after receiving the service. By providing beds and other basic necessities, all donated and recycled, empty spaces are transformed into warm and dignified homes that families will strive to preserve.

Humble Design has been profiled by NBC’s Today show, ABC’s World News Tonight, CNN, Inside Edition, Forbes, and many other national and local media outlets. U-Haul signed on as the group’s primary sponsor in 2016. It offers the equipment, storage and also the national infrastructure to make the operation more seamless and expansion possible.

Getting Involved

Corporations interested in being part of Humble Design’s newest chapter can email San Diego development manager Estee Alias at estee@humbledesign.org. Individuals interested in volunteering as well as donating home furnishings can email San Diego operations manager Manny Moreno at manny@humbledesign.org.

Local corporate support is also pivotal to jumpstarting chapters. CB2 serves as an official sponsor of Humble Design Chicago, while the Schultz Family Foundation and Microsoft have taken a big stake in Humble Design Seattle.

“We would love to hear from individuals and corporations who would like to support our September launch,” Alias said. “We offer companies the chance to sponsor a family or schedule a day of service when they can send up to 10 volunteers to furnish a home.

“Along with a few private donors, we are thankful the UBS® Liddy Group has given a generous donation. WeWork® has provided us amazing office space in which we hold our meetings. Sony PlayStation® employees joined us for a warehouse volunteer day. Jerome’s Furniture® has generously offered to help with donated furniture. But we still need a large amount of seed funding to hire more staff and cover operational costs. We are looking for a giving partner in San Diego who shares our mission and is willing to invest in ending homelessness.”

National City Location

Humble Design San Diego will be based at U-Haul Moving & Storage of National City at 1300 Wilson Ave. Partnering San Diego shelters will assist in identifying families who are in need of services. The plan is to help one family per week in the chapter’s first year.

“Our goal is to end the revolving door of homelessness by turning empty spaces into warm, welcoming homes through a dignified experience that leads to successful lives,” Humble Design Co-CEO Rob Strasberg shared.

Finally, visit the San Diego chapter website or Facebook page to learn more or make a donation.

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