Radical Listening


Radical Listening


A communal event for housed and unhoused residents.



Radical Listening


Radical Listening


A communal event for housed and unhoused residents.



Collaborate with local communities in San Francisco that bring housed and unhoused neighbors together in an effort to dismantle the stigma of homelessness.


A two prong approach for creating positive social transformation:

  • Compassion (education)

 We need to provide education and awareness that foster solidarity in an effort to begin building the political will to change the existing broken system. This includes efforts that bridge the gap between housed and unhoused neighbors by building compassion, community, dignity and respect for all our fellow humans, regardless of their economic status. This will help solve problems that we saw last year where San Franciscan's voted on Prop Q to prohibit tents, but then did not pass the proposition required to allocate the required funding the provide services for the folks living in those tent!

  • Mobilization (policy change)

The solution to homelessness is simple; we need more housing.  Clearly the implementation is complicated in places like San Francisco where housing and land is at such a premium. We need to be smart about creating this housing. We need to mobilize, we to lobby our representatives and pressure them to author legislative and policy change to create reform. We need to use this political will to get the votes needed to support these efforts. Here's an interesting example. Our city is filled with innovators who have incredible ideas for affordable housing, like Patrick Kennedy, who has invented the MicroPad, an ingenious way to decrease cost and increase efficiency of space to provide low income housing and housing for unhoused neighbors. Efforts like his have been stymied by the stigma of homelessness and poverty - many people with the NIMBY attitude who don't want the "other" the "homeless," in their neighborhoods. There is a real opportunity to shift mindset, people will begin to accept unhoused neighbors into their neighborhood once they begin to view them as the neighbors they, instead of the "other", people who are dangerous and threatening to their community.

Brunch Under The Bridge

Our first event hosted at the Hairball (Mission/ Potrero Hill neighborhoods) was radical listening event that was wildly well received.  A variety of hyper local housed and unhoused neighbors came together over a communal meal in an effort to understand one another's perspective.


Hairball Brunch

The Potrero Hill and Mission community plan to host more events at this location likely with less infrastructure in an effort to comply with city ordinances and a budget that scales. The hope is to build trust among all neighbors by fostering a stronger sense of community on an ongoing basis. Our intention is to breakdown the stigma of homelessness and begin working to dismantle the NIMBY attitude that prevents policy measures needed to develop long term solutions for addressing this cycle of poverty.

Eye Opener

There is interest in bringing this type of event to other neighborhoods both as a means for addressing immediate tensions but also to foster general education and awareness of the issue of homelessness. The hope is to create proximity, foster community and imagine a new city that respects all residents equally. The plan is to focus at the community level to drive systemic change.


Interested? Please get in touch

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Brunch Under The Bridge

Brunch Under The Bridge


Under the bridge

This is a radical listening event developed to spur a shift in consciousness around the issue of homelessness.

This community gathering is an opportunity to connect unhoused (homeless) residents currently living under the Cesar Chavez bridge in San Francisco together with local housed residents. The event will include a three course sit down brunch, live music, and meaningful conversation with a focus on cultivating relationships between two distinctly different groups. We hope to provide space for conversation that shows each group they have more in common then they may have thought. 

Our intention is to bring two disconnected communities together with a listening exercise in an effort to address their immediate needs. We will facilitate conversations that connect impoverished residents with their surrounding neighbors. Ultimately we hope this can be a model for creating dignity, compassion and understanding amongst marginalized members of the community.



Homelessness has become extreme here in San Francisco. For so many people homelessness is just another issue and that dehumanizes each and every person living on the streets. With over 7,500 people homeless in the city of SF alone, it has become common for many to simply ignore their brothers and sisters desperately asking for help.

The aim of Under the Bridge is to create an experience that shows that every human being deserves dignity and respect. This event is an opportunity to bring together people from very different walks of life and break stigmas and stereotypes that keep our housed residents and housed residents from connecting as neighbors.


Guests will be neighbors currently living in the immediate surrounding areas of Cesar Chavez & 101 in San Francisco's Mission and Potrero Hill neighborhoods and unhoused (homeless) neighbors will be currently living at the Hairball.


This event is by invitation only and will seek to connect two different groups that live close geographically but never have a chance to understand one another's story. A three course brunch will be prepared and served by chef Martin McGrath. 


October 28th, 2017 from 11am to 1pm.


The Hairball (Ceasar Chavez & 101 freeway underpass) Location will be disclosed on invitation.


About the Chef

Martin was most recently executive chef at The Brixton, and has cooked at Gather, Boot and Shoe, Garibaldi's and Oliveto, among other restaurants. His food focuses on hearty and rich flavors that favor vegetarian and rustic Italian ingredients and recipes. Mart.n is also passionate about social justice and finding ways to provide relief for our unhoused neighbors.


Reserve a free ticket here.

A suggested donation for housed neighbors is $40 per person. Admission is free but you must either live at the Hairball or show you have a residence in the immediate surrounding area. 30 seats have been reserved for unhoused neighbors living at the Hairball. 20 seats have been reserved for housed neighbors who live in the immediate surrounding area. All proceeds will be used to cover costs of the event.

Major funding for this initiative was made possible through the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation's #MakeItHappen initiative. (The content provided reflects the opinion of its organizer and does not necessarily represent the views of the Foundation, its partner organizations or all program participants.)