At its annual fundraiser on May 30th, Homeless Prenatal Program broke from the traditional gala form and presented an art exhibition that celebrated the agency’s neighborhood while grappling with its changes. At the same time, the event underscored HPP’s mission to break the cycle of childhood poverty. This thought-provoking event engaged clients, staff and supporters in a fresh way, while honoring the agency’s vibrant community. With over 500 guests, leaders in tech, city government and philanthropy joined their neighbors to invest locally, raising over $200,000 to support homeless and low-income families.
Our House, Our Mission showcased a special photography exhibition by Janet Delaney, whose work, South of Market is currently showing at the de Young Museum. South of Market chronicles the changes of San Francisco’s SOMA District. This new series, Ten Women: Ten Stories, features portraits of HPP client families in their homes – including temporary shelters, affordable housing, and long-term Mission residences. As with her prior work, these photographs offer compelling images of residents against a shifting cityscape.
“Despite the difficulties outside, by walking through HPP’s doors, clients and supporters alike immediately experience the feeling of coming home. Across backgrounds and backyards, we’re a family. And we thought, what if we could share that feeling with the city?” says Martha Ryan, Founder and Executive Director. “As documented in Janet Delaney’s beautiful photographs, it’s becoming harder and harder for our clients to live in San Francisco. HPP is proud to partner with families and local humanitarians in an effort to make our city a more equitable place.”
In addition to Delaney’s contributions, the evening boasted work from two additional local artists. Marsha Shaw, printmaker, teacher and manager of Mission Grafica (a part of Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts) created a 20-color screenprint for the evening featuring HPP’s iconic home, The Lipman Family Building, on the corner of 18th and Potrero. The agency also unveiled a mural by The Artillery’s Ivan Lopez at the event. The show was complemented with pieces by HPP staff and clients, interactive artwork by attendees and a viewing room showing the San Francisco Chronicle’s recent special report entitled A changing Mission. The exhibition was curated by the event committee, led by the devoted and talented Event Chair, Jennifer Board.
Entertainment was provided by vocalist and harpist María José Montijo and DJ Offerings of Audiopharmacy. Food and drinks honored the neighborhood’s distinctive culture, serving festive bites by Straw, beer donated by Lagunitas Brewing Company; desserts and coffee generously provided by La Victoria Bakery, Tartine and Philz. A silent auction featured artwork as well as a large offering from neighborhood businesses such as Bissap Baobob, Mission Bowling and St. Francis Fountain.
Our House, Our Mission honored Dr. Daniel Wlordarczyk, Attending Physician at SF General Hospital and South East Health Center. Dr. Dan – as he is affectionately known by his patients and colleagues – was among the first physicians to recognize the importance of quality health care for underserved pregnant women and families in the city. He helped inspire the founding of HPP over 25 years ago.
Proceeds from Our House, Our Mission directly support the agency’s programming to support families in need. HPP serves over 4,000 families a year, with an emphasis on perinatal services and parenting, while also offering housing assistance, domestic violence services, mental health support, child welfare assistance, job training and emergency support of basic needs. The first agency in San Francisco to hire former clients as direct service staff, half of HPP’s staff of 80 comes from the community it serves
Jennifer Board, Chair
Valerie Alaimo • Molly Finn Titley
Victoria Fiore • Jen Greco • Sara Kassabian
Margaret Lynch • Stacy Tran