Senator John Laird honors Housing Matters as 2023 District 17 Nonprofit of the Year



CONTACT: Justin Tran, 


SACRAMENTO – State Senator John Laird (D- Santa Cruz) recognized Housing Matters as the 17th Senate District’s 2023 Nonprofit of the Year for their mission and work to make homelessness in Santa Cruz County rare, brief, and non-recurring. Housing Matters runs a three-facility, 160-bed campus that supports those facing homelessness in the surrounding Santa Cruz community. With a budget of over $11.7 million, they are the largest local non-profit working exclusively on homelessness.

Housing Matters has operated for over 20 years and they assist nearly 3,000 individuals per year. The bed space they provide accounts for nearly half of the beds available in all of Santa Cruz County. Staff also provide supportive services such as case management and housing navigation, as well as, day services which include hot showers, bathrooms, and physical mailing addresses. 

In addition to these services, Housing Matters also offers three formal housing programs: Permanent Supportive Housing, Rapid Re-Housing, and Housing Problem Solving. They recognize that all clients need individualized support to get back on the right track to permanent housing. 

"Housing Matters is tackling an issue that is not only a concern within our local community but also statewide. They have achieved concrete results, securing permanent housing for 317 people and distributing almost 100,000 meals in 2022. I am honored to acknowledge their dedicated efforts in addressing homelessness.”

This recognition bestowed upon Housing Matters for its exceptional achievements as the 2023 Non-Profit of the Year for the 17th Senate District is a commendable testament to its indispensable contributions within the community. The Senator will also be honoring the staff and board of Housing Matters later this week in the district alongside local officials. 


Senator John Laird represents the 17th State Senate District, which includes all of Santa Cruz and San Luis Obispo counties, the majority of Monterey County, as well as parts of Santa Clara County. He previously served as the Secretary of the California Natural Resources Agency, member of the State Integrated Waste Management Board, a member of the State Assembly, Executive Director of the Santa Cruz Aids Project, and two terms as Santa Cruz Mayor. His lifetime of public service and social justice advocacy saw him become one of the first openly gay mayors to serve in the United States. Senator Laird has been a long-time resident of Santa Cruz with his spouse John Flores.