The Illumination Foundation (IF) is a non-profit 501 (c) (3), non-denominational, grassroots organization that addresses the crisis of homelessness in Orange County through integrated services that provide appropriate solutions.
What is the Illumination Foundation?
Bridge the gap in existing services for the most underserved to break or prevent the cycle of homelessness.
Our vision is to break the cycle of homelessness. Our public/private partnership combines housing and social services with healthcare and behavioral mental health services to reduce the impacts of homelessness and reduce people’s vulnerability to future homelessness.
We offer a low-entry threshold to advance health and housing stability for the most vulnerable members of our community, with a focus on families with children and those with medical or mental health conditions.
We empower adults with the tools to become self-sufficient and inspire children to grow into independent, productive adults.
Experts on homelessness within Orange County agree that it has reached crisis proportions, and that there are not enough resources designated for chronic and emergency programs. With that understanding, IF was founded in late 2007 to effectively lower the barriers for Orange County’s homeless population to access existing resources and services. In July 2008 IF launched the “Pre-Transitional Housing and Wrap-Around Program”, a comprehensive program that houses and supports homeless families with children in motels in Orange County. IF was established within the UC Irvine Health Care Executive MBA Program as a non-profit public charity organization. Today, IF’s governing board consists of community leaders in medicine, nursing, social work, information technology and education.
The Homeless Crisis in Orange County
- 21,000 – 35,000 homeless people in Orange County
- Over 26,000 Orange County public school students are living in unstable housing conditions
- 3,400 shelter beds have high-entry qualifications that leave homeless people on the streets.
- A critical shortage of affordable permanent housing
- A minimum wage worker has to work 125 hours/week to afford a one-bedroom apartment
- A shortage of affordable housing for renters can instigate a cycle of poverty