Housing and Community Services Department
Housing and Community Services Department

City of Berkeley Shelter Plus Care Program

The Berkeley Shelter Plus Care Program has been an important component of the continuum of care for people who are homeless and disabled.  The Shelter Plus Care Program is funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to provide housing subsidies to people who are homeless with a disability due to a serious mental illness, chronic drug or alcohol dependence, or HIV/AIDS.  The Program is administered by the Berkeley Health, Housing & Community Services Department in collaboration with Mental Health Division, and several community-based service agencies.  The program combines a rental subsidy with ongoing supportive services to assist chronically homeless individuals and families to obtain and maintain housing.

Currently, the City of Berkeley Housing Department operates five Shelter Plus Care grants providing a total of 240 units of supportive housing for people who are homeless and disabled.

Who is eligible?

Applicants must meet all of the following criteria:

  • The applicant must be able to document that they are disabled due to a severe mental illness, chronic drug or alcohol dependence, or HIV/AIDS.
  • The applicant must be receiving services at one of the following agencies in Berkeley, and homeless according to one of the following definitions:
    • Residing in an emergency shelter;
    • Sleeping on the streets or in a vehicle or some other public place; or
    • Currently residing in transitional housing, and they were staying in a shelter or on the streets prior to entering the transitional housing program.
  • The applicant must be low income according to HUD guidelines (50% of area median income-- currently $31,250 per year for a single adult).
  • The applicant must be willing to participate in case management services, and able to live safely in their own apartment.

How does someone apply?

Each of the service agencies has a designated number of Shelter Plus Care subsidies available, and each agency maintains a waiting list for the subsidies dedicated for their program.  The agencies only accept new applications for their waiting list during limited periods of time.  In order to get on a waiting list, interested applicants must meet the eligibility criteria and be enrolled as a client at the agency before the agency opens their waiting list to accept new applications.

Once an applicant reaches the top of a waiting list, the agency will verify their eligibility and then enroll them into the Shelter Plus Care Program.  Each agency provides case management and support services for as long as the participant receives rental assistance through the Shelter Plus Care Program. 

The collaborating service agencies that maintain waiting lists for the Berkeley Shelter Plus Care Program are:

Agency Name



Berkeley Drop-In Center

3234 Adeline Street


Berkeley Food and Housing Project

2362 Bancroft Way


Berkeley Mental Health

2640 MLK Way


City of Berkeley Aging Services Division

West Berkeley Senior Center


Bonita House, Inc.

6333 Telegraph Ave. Suite 102 Oakland


BOSS/Multi-Agency Service Center

1931 Center Street


East Bay AIDS Center

Alta Bates Summit Center
3100 Summit Ave./2nd Fl.


Haste House/ Rubicon Programs

1918 Bonita Street


LifeLong Medical Care

616 16th Street,


Women s Day-time Drop-In Center

2218 Acton Street



1744 University Avenue



Interested applicants must go through the waiting list process established by one of the agencies listed above. The City does not operate a centralized waiting list for Shelter Plus Care, or distribute or accept applications for Shelter Plus Care. Questions about the City’s role in the Shelter Plus Care program can be directed to Andrew Wicker at 510-981-5418.



Home | Web Policy | Text-Only Site Map | Contact Us
Housing and Community Services Department, 2180 Milvia Street, 2nd Floor, Berkeley, CA 94704
Questions or comments? Email: HHCS@cityofberkeley.info Phone: (510) 981-5400
(510) 981-CITY/2489 or 311 from any landline in Berkeley
TTY: (510) 981-6903