It’s all about providing attainable housing, and creating community. —Amy Appleton, Executive Director, SHARE California
About SHARE Sonoma County
SHARE Sonoma County initially was started in 2014 and funded in 2015 with a seed grant from the Dominican Sisters of San Rafael. For the next three years, the organization operated out of Petaluma People’s Services in Petaluma and during this time–with limited resources and staff (only one Home Matching Specialist)–provided 300 matches. We’ve since added staff and moved into our Santa Rosa office, dramatically increasing the number of SHARE matches.
SHARE matches place an individual needing housing into a home with a senior (over 60) who otherwise would have been unable to remain in his or her home because of the ‘house rich, cash poor’ syndrome or needing carefully defined support services which the tenant provides in exchange for paying less or no rent.
Said Sonoma County Supervisor Shirley Zane, “Amy Appleton of SHARE Sonoma County is grabbing the low hanging for fruit for affordable housing,“ referring to the system of matching people into already existent housing. SHARE Sonoma County’s program provides one of the fastest ways to place families and individuals into an affordable home. Subsidized and affordable housing is offered at the county, state and federal levels but the wait list to get into such a home is often as long as five years or more. SHARE Sonoma County has provided stopgap measures in the interim, getting people into housing much sooner, even as they remain on the wait lists. Building housing is also a lengthy and expensive process, leaving people without affordable housing options. Through the SHARE Sonoma County matching process, parties are vetted, with SHARE Sonoma County providing support, thus alleviating the most common reason for shared housing not to work—fear of allowing strangers into one’s home. The evidenced based program also is supported by municipalities throughout the county and is the preferred model for solving the housing shortage affordably.
SHARE Sonoma County is designed to be able to create genuine community, in the form of home sharing, for elders, folks with disabilities and disaster victims, who need a decent affordable home to call their own. SHARE Sonoma County is a 501 ( c ) 3.