CalNonprofits Articles

Last November, we received 47 nominations from nonprofit members doing incredible voter engagement work in their communities. Our panel of distinguished judges had a difficult time choosing between so many great stories, but in the end there can only be one winner. Congratulations to the Coalition on Homelessness for winning the $10,000 Community Engagement Champion Award!  

The Coalition on Homelessness serves and advocates for people who are living without permanent housing in San Francisco. They are "deeply committed to uplifting the political power of the homeless community" and make sure that "decisions that effect homeless people are made with input from homeless people themselves."

With that philosophy in mind, the staff of COH launched into a campaign of "voter activation" that included increasing political participation of poor and homeless people, as well as educating and inspiring San Franciscans to vote for the measures that secured funding for ending homelessness.

With input from homeless people, COH developed a slate of 10 measures --five they wanted to pass and five they wanted to defeat -- which was then distributed city-wide. Homeless and low income people participated in phone banking, door-to-door precinct walking, voter registration drives, and writing and distributing campaign messages through the Street Sheet newspaper. They also organized public demonstrations "that artistically demonstrated our opposition to a proposed ban on tents in the city." 

Longer-term, COH is translating voter activism into ongoing participation in their projects and systemic change work. "Anti-homeless rhetoric is a huge barrier to our work in San Francisco...we need people to help us fight to end homelessness all year long." 

Thank you to the staff and volunteers of Coalition on Homelessness and all of the other amazing nonprofits in our community! 

CalNonprofits Insurance Services (CIS), a subsidiary of CalNonprofits, is the one-stop solution for nonprofits looking for insurance, personalized customer service, and education tailored to the specialized needs of nonprofits. CIS offers a full range of employee benefit (health, dental, vision, and more) and liability insurance products (Directors and Officers, volunteer liability, cyber liability, event insurance and more) as well as exclusive nonprofit insurance programs. Each year CIS offers a $10,000 prize to a nonprofit organization doing excellent work in a specific area. Nominees are not required to be CIS clients to win. For more information or a free quote visit

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