By Kevin Romine
SAN ANTONIO – Downtown San Antonio is seeing a transformation occur at Haven for Hope 365 days a year to combat the root problem of homelessness in South Texas in order to change lives for the better.
When the campus opened in 2010, New Star Energy founder Bill Greehey made a commitment to not just tackle the problem of homelessness but also the issues that lead to its cause. From lack of job training to substance abuse problems, Haven for Hope is here to give an opportunity San Antonio’s homeless population.
“Not just to open a shelter but a transformational center that heavily worked with our other community partners to help provide immediate shelter to individuals,” said David Huete, senior director of transformational support services at Haven for Hope. “…But also to help individuals deal with that life situation that lead them to homelessness in the first place.”
Haven for Hope is exactly what Huete describes. It is a campus with education resources, living quarters, a working staff and even a dog kennel and a cattery for people with pets.
“So [Greehey] got a broad coalition of individuals and institutions to help get Haven [for Hope] of the ground,” Huete said. “One of the biggest things he did was he went around Texas and outside of Texas to raise the $100 million it took to build the campus.”
The campus is currently 22-acres wide and is home to over 1,000 people.
“Pre-COVID and hopefully soon, post-COVID, we serve 1,600 people a day,” Huete said. “1,600 people, every night, sleep somewhere on our campus.”
Haven for Hope offers several types of services to combat homelessness.
“Our main service, we call our transformational services. Those are housing services, getting people linked to the right housing provider,” Huete said. “A lot of times Haven [for Hope] is that housing provider.”
Haven for hope currently accepts donations on its website as well as volunteers. Simply visit www.havenforhope.org.