black and white photos by David Entrikin

Opening Doors since 1979

DESC opened its doors in 1979 as an emergency shelter, a place for vulnerable adults living with behavioral health disorders and chronic homelessness to come in out of the cold for the night.

Today our mission is not merely to offer shelter, but to end the homelessness of our community's most vulnerable people, through an integrated array of clinical services and supportive housing that allows men and women to reclaim their lives and reach their highest potential. more

latest news

2014 DESC Annual Report

Available here

projects under development

Estelle Supportive Housing DESC intends to develop a future affordable housing in Southeast Seattle, located at 3501-3507 Rainier Avenue South. An informational forum about this new housing development was held on August 5, 2015 at DESC Rainier House. more


Housing First for people with serious psychiatric problems eliminates homelessness and significantly reduces psychiatric hospitalizations. more

Chronic homelessness is a serious public health issue that places a strain on health-care and criminal justice systems. Typical housing models place requirements on chronically homeless individuals that are often experienced as insurmountable barriers to housing. This article describes the key features and evidence base of the "single-site" Housing First model in use at DESC, using our 1811 Eastlake program as a case study. more

Housing First reduces use of emergency medical services more

consultation and technical assistance

While DESC's priority is to provide services for vulnerable people in our community, we also make ourselves available for consultation to share our accumulated wisdom and strategies to address the most difficult to serve chronically homeless populations. more

Following the success of the 2012 and 2014 Housing First Partners Conference, DESC and Pathways National presented the 2016 Housing First Partners Conference, "Taking Housing First to Scale," on March 22-25, 2016, at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel in Los Angeles, CA. The 2016 conference was attended by over 800 service providers, federal, state and local government officials, funders, researchers, advocates, trainers, peers and thought leaders engaged in ending homelessness through Housing First. more

Remembering Bill Hobson
Bill HobsonThe former director of DESC, and creator of the Housing First philosophy passed away on March 4 at his home. He was 76.

Bill was determined that the most marginalized and forgotten segments of society got the resources they needed to lead a quality life. This was his fight for social justice. Virtually everything we do at DESC is Bill's legacy. His stance that there is no such thing as a throwaway person remains the inspiration for our work.

Read more about Bill's life and legacy or make a gift in his honor here


We we able to raise over $144,000 at the Dreaming of Home Gala on May 19th.

DESC 2016 Gala

Special Thanks to Keynote Speaker Maia Szalavitz and our gala host Deborah Horne of KIRO 7.

For more about this years results, visit our events page here

Interested in sponsoring DESC events? Contact us