The Beginnings

Five years ago, I moved to San Francisco to work in a Crisis Center. What I didn’t know at the time was that the greatest crisis I would encounter would not be in that work, but rather in my encounters on the streets of San Francisco where thousands of people were going to sleep every night. 
 
For many months, I was filled with feelings of hopelessness. It was after seeing a mother and her young child waiting for space in a shelter for temporary protection from the rain that I made the choice to stop feeling hopeless and start taking action. I began with a small public appeal to collect menstrual products for women, a basic human need. In less than two days, we had collected enough products for every homeless woman in San Francisco. The community response was so strong that for a brief time I couldn’t shower because my bathtub had become tampon storage! 
 
That initiative taught me two things: We were capable of solving the problem of people not having access to their most basic needs; and we were going to do it with the support of people like YOU, who were not only willing, but eager to make this program possible.
 
In the following months, we deliberately conducted research with hospitals, nonprofits, and listened to our homeless neighbors. We learned about the deteriorating health and life-threatening impact of poor hygiene and about how people feel an inability to focus on goals like getting housed or employed when they can’t meet their most basic needs. We didn’t want to be just another nonprofit adding to the sea of services already available; we were determined to be impactful and thoughtful. 
 
From there, Simply the Basics was born. We began slowly with a handful of nonprofit partners, delivering hygiene kits at 6am and on lunch breaks. Thanks to your support we have grown rapidly, we now partner with 85 nonprofits across 22 states and two continents.
 
Today, I put to each of you another appeal, similar to my first - help us reach more people!

We receive new requests every week from potential nonprofit partners. We understand the need, but we can’t meet it without your help. 100 percent of your donation will go to a neighbor in crisis. 
 
Your compassion will be felt by all of us. 
 
Sincerely,

Meghan Freebeck
Board President

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