Shelters to Shutters is a national 501(c)3 organization that transitions individuals and families from homelessness to economic self-sufficiency by educating and engaging the real estate industry to provide employment and housing opportunities.
Across the country, Shelters to Shutters pairs leading property management professionals with individuals experiencing homelessness who are ready to work. The result is an innovative program that provides mentorships for careers in property management, along with full-time employment and housing opportunities for individuals facing homelessness and a pipeline of high quality, motivated employees for the multifamily housing industry.
In December of 2012, Shelters to Shutters Founder Christopher C. Finlay, was reading Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine when he came across an article profiling homelessness in Asheville, North Carolina. As an owner of a property management company, he knew he was uniquely positioned to do something about it. He started envisioning a model that would pair industry professionals with homeless individuals who wanted to work—offering a “hand up” and a pathway for economic independence. It was from this concept that Shelters to Shutters was born.
It is estimated that over the course of a year, 3.5 million Americans experience homelessness, 40 percent of whom are children. These individuals and families experience a life-altering event such as a job loss, domestic abuse, or other situations and find themselves where they never thought they would be—without a home. Unlike most perceptions, less than 30% of homeless have drug or alcohol dependency issues, or are mentally ill. Most individuals facing homelessness want to work and return to a life of self-sufficiency.
Shelters to Shutters engages property managers and real estate professionals to provide housing and job opportunities for individuals looking for a "hand up" not a "hand out" on their path from homelessness to economic self-sufficiency. Shelters to Shutters provides participating property management companies with pre-screened, job trained candidates for their entry level positions. We identify successful candidates through partnerships with local non-profit organizations serving the homeless, veterans, and domestic violence victims.
"Look at it like this:
It's going to cost you nothing, but it will change someone's life."