We started with nothing but our community. Since 2013, we created the first institutional Basic Needs Committee (students, staff, faculty, administrators, and community members learning & working together), we've served well over 10,000 students, our model has been replicated across college & universities in California and across the United States. We are honored to FINALLY be opening a Basic Needs Center at UC Berkeley.
Our Basic Needs efforts focus on 4 areas: research, prevention, sustainability, and advocacy. Research: We have published the 2 largest studies in higher education on college student basic needs. We've learned that at UC Berkeley: 39% of undergraduates and 23% of graduate students experience food insecurity during the academic year. Additionally, 10% of both undergraduate and graduate students experience homelessness. Prevention: We have designed a prevention model that start with pre-college education on basic needs, integration of basic needs information and guidance for 1st-year college students, CalFresh/SNAP enrollment, Basic Needs skills development courses/workshops, Emergency Relief, and Crisis Resolution. Sustainability: It is essential that our efforts are committed to the sustainability of our environment and that we make sure our efforts improve each other to better serve each generation of students in need. Advocacy: We know that economic, food, and housing justice impact too many people. We refuse to reproduce the hierarchy of human value. Therefore, we advocate for economic + food + housing justice for all. We have mobilized and helped pass over 4 state bills in support of student food justice and have informed several national efforts in support of student basic needs.
It is so so so important to us that we do all of this as a village. A village that is centered in intersectionality, equity, justice, and love. We are so excited to work with you to create the logo and branding kit for our center. Thank you for your commitment, energy, and time!