Ritter Center helps low-income residents improve their lives through free integrated services including medical and behavioral health services, housing, case management and financial assistance.
Web Site www.rittercenter.org
Grandad and Local Resident Pops was Homeless for 8 Years Until He Found Ritter Center
Pops has been housed since 2012, works at a local school, and helps out at Ritter Center
San Rafael grandad and Ritter Center client and volunteer, Pops, lived in his car for 8 years following a job loss. Ritter Center became his community hub and a lifeline for everyday essentials. In 2012, Ritter found Pops a permanent home.
“In 2004 I was laid off. I wasn’t getting along with the guy I was living with, so I put my stuff into storage and moved into my car. That was it. I became homeless at that moment and although I never slept on the streets, I lived in my car until 2012,” said Pops.“I was fortunate in that I always had a vehicle and usually some form of employment, but my job just wasn’t secure enough to sign a lease on a place to call home."
“Ritter Center was a great place for me to do laundry and take a shower. In 2012, Ritter helped me find a spare room that was available in Novato and a few months later, I had a place in the Canal District. I am able to afford it on my income and it is a wonderful place to call home. I help out at San Rafael High School athletic games making sure the teams have water and trainers have medical equipment. I maintain the golf carts. Of course, this was all pre-COVID. I look forward to returning when it is safe again. I have been there 21 years and I miss it,” shares Pops.
"The Ritter food pantry is also important. There is a lot more demand during the pandemic. It fulfills a need because many families aren’t working now and they need a little extra help to get by. Beans, cans of tuna, and peanut butter. Every little bit counts."