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In the face of a global pandemic, widening wealth inequality, inadequate housing supply, and systemic racism, urban communities are increasingly struggling to find impactful solutions to addressing homelessness. Even with the best of intentions, interventions often fail to center the perspectives, experiences, and basic needs of those who are unhoused.

The City of Sacramento is no exception. On any given day, upwards of 5,000 people experience homelessness. The City has seen an increase in homelessness, along with a deficit in affordable housing and wages that fall short of rising rental costs (same source). Yet this past spring, the City found itself with a unique opportunity: Funding from the state’s 2021 budget as well as the American Rescue Plan Act, coupled with and a scattering of vacant sites, positioned them to channel resources towards better assisting the unhoused population.