Bill Wilson Center


Santa Clara, CA   |


Bill Wilson Center's mission is to support and strengthen the community by serving youth and families through counseling, housing, education, and advocacy. Bill Wilson Center's vision is working to prevent poverty in the next generation by connecting youth and families to education, employment, housing and positive relationships. We are working toward ending youth and family homelessness.

Ruling year info



Josh Selo

Main address

3490 The Alameda

Santa Clara, CA 95050 USA

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NTEE code info

Children's and Youth Services (P30)

Family Counseling, Marriage Counseling (P46)

Temporary Shelter For the Homeless (L41)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

The extreme high cost of housing in Santa Clara County continues to push youth and families into homelessness. Bill Wilson Center is working to identify youth and families at-risk of becoming homelessness and working with them to find solutions that provide stability in their lives.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Transitional Housing

Counseling and Outreach Services:
* Family and Individual Counseling Center provides low-cost, professional counseling services to individuals and families in the Santa Clara Valley.
* School Outreach Counseling Program provides counseling services to students in the middle and high schools of Santa Clara Unified School District.

Residential Services:
* Runaway and Homeless Youth Residential Program offers short-term housing to youth (ages 11 - 17), as well as intensive individual, group and family counseling.
* Quetzal House is a six-bed, short-term group home for girls ages 13 ? 17 who are chronic runaways from the foster care system.

Youth Services:
* Independent Living Skills Program (ILSP) teaches youth in foster care the skills they need to become self-sufficient.
* Restorative Justice Program provides first time offenders an alternative to incarceration and/or citation by the local police and/or probation department.
* Safe Place provides youth with access to services or safety. Safe Place Community Outreach provides leadership skills to youth.
* Peer Education Training recruits, trains, and supervises peer educators who provide prevention services, mentoring, and tutoring.

Family Services:
* Contact Cares provides objective listening, caring involvement, and information and referrals on 24-hour crisis lines.
* Para Las Familias Visitation Center provides supervised visitation designed to lessen impact of separation when a child is removed from the parent?s custody.

Transitional Housing:
* Transitional Housing Program provides housing and support services for older, homeless youth ages 16 ? 22, including parenting youth and their infants/ toddlers.
* Transitional Housing Placement Program provides similar services for youth who are currently in the foster care system.

Centre for Living with Dying:
* Centre for Living With Dying provides emotional support to adults and children facing life-threatening illness or the trauma of having a loved one die.

Drop-In Center:
* Drop-In Center for homeless youth provides basic necessities as well as counseling, job readiness, housing assistance, HIV prevention, and links to other community services.

Population(s) Served
Young adults
Children and youth

Mental Health Services for Medi-Cal eligible children and youth, including therapy and psychiatric services.

Population(s) Served
Young adults

Residential Services for runaway and homeless youth, group and family counseling and a short term group home for girls 13-17 who are chronic runaways from foster care.

Population(s) Served
Young adults
Children and youth

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Average number of service recipients per month

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children and youth, Young adults, Non-adult children, Families, Adolescent parents

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Bill Wilson Center is committed to working with the community to ensure that every youth has access to the range of services needed to grow to be healthy and self-sufficient adults. Bill Wilson Center has been providing services to runaway and homeless youth since 1973.

There are eight guiding principles that drive Bill Wilson Center in developing and implementing programs and services:

No Fail
Everyone can be successful. We keep trying.

Least Restrictive Environment
We help people solve problems at the family and the community level; public institutions are the last resort.

We provide services that meet the cultural and linguistic needs of our whole community. We value our unique ethnic diversity as well as the LGBTQ community and non-able body community. Our clients, staff, and volunteers reflect our community.

We look for the positive in each person and build on those assets.

Youth Development and Leadership
We support youth. We help build leadership skills by involving youth in programs and planning for their future, many services are youth-led.

Advocacy & Social Justice
We expand equity and justice for youth and families while eliminating systematic bias, bigotry and racism.

We work with others to provide a continuum of services; we focus on all the needs of the individual, including health, housing and well-being.

Families Matter
We help keep families together and build reconnections to families. We recognize that “families" come in all shapes and sizes.

Centre for Living with Dying (CLW) – Provide counseling, therapy, crisis intervention and education to children, adolescents and adults dealing with grief and loss.
Outpatient – Provide family and individual counseling on topics of family conflict, substance abuse, depression, anxiety, stress, out-of-control behavior and school-related issues.
School Outreach – Provide middle and high school youth in Santa Clara County Unified School District with counseling on school performance, family conflict, drug prevention, gang involvement, truancy, etc.
Family Advocacy Services – Provide homeless prevention and school based family advocacy service to youth, family and school staff at Lincoln High School and Mt. Pleasant High School.
Foster Family Agency (FFA) (ages 0 to 18) – Provide stable, caring, temporary homes for children who have been removed from their families. Foster homes are intended to provide short or long term care while the child prepares for permanency, whether returning to birth family members or adoption by the foster family.
Transitional Housing Placement Program (THPP) (ages 16 to 18) – Provide housing and life skills training to foster care youth. The goal is to help youth find and maintain permanent housing and to live independently with confidence.
Transitional Housing Program Plus Foster Care (THP+FC) (ages 18 to 21) – Provide support services to non-minor dependent single and parenting foster care youth to prepare them to live independently.
Peacock Commons – Provide supportive housing program consisting of 28 unit and six live-in mentors providing services to including case management, employment counseling, etc., to chronically or at-risk of homeless young adult.
TAY – Provide a 90 day temporary housing program and Peer Partners provide supportive services including linkage to community resource, mental health services, substance abuse treatment, transitional planning, etc.
Transitional Housing Program (THP) – Provide a 24 month program and staff provides comprehensive services to single and parenting young adults. Young adults live in shared and minimally supervised houses.
Transitional Housing Program Plus (THP+) – Provide a 24 month program in which young adults participate in one of three model including scattered sites (own apartments, shared housing, etc.), host homes (reside with their former foster family or other life-long connection) or residence halls at San Jose State University. Supportive services include goal setting, counseling and life skill training.
Peacock Commons – Provide supportive housing program consisting of 28 unit and six live-in mentors providing services to including case management, employment counseling, etc., to chronically or at-risk of homeless young adult.
LGBTQ+ Connections - The BWC Connections Drop-In Center is a safe and supportive environment for LGBTQ+ youth and allies to form peer groups and share experiences.

In Fiscal Year 2022, staff across the agency provided services to more than 5,000 individuals participating in counseling, education, foster care, housing, mental health, basic needs, probation and shelter programs, and reached more than 30,000 individuals through BWC's outreach programs and crisis hotlines.

Largest group of individuals served were 12-25 years of age.

Female individuals were more likely to access counseling, housing, and mental health services (Centre for Living with Dying; Outpatient; School Outreach; Transitional Housing; Transitional Housing Plus Foster Care, etc.).

Male individuals were more likely to access short-term services, shelter, and probation services (Respite; Drop-In Center; TAY INN; Status Offender Services, Support Enhancement Services, Competency Development Services, etc.).

Mental Health – 722 youth and young adults received mental health received services.

Family Advocacy Services – 100% of the students, whose families were helped, were able to stay in school.

Transitional Housing – Successfully discharged 83% young adults to safe and stable housing.

Safety Net Shelter – 86% success rate of reuniting youth their parents, kin or other stable placement.

This past year Santa Clara County awarded Bill Wilson Center a grant to take over operation of the homeless shelter call center that began as a response to Covid. We expanded the call center services to include case management and financial support to prevent homelessness. Now called Here4You, we answer an average of 300-plus calls each day trying to match people with available beds in our community.

We also teamed up with the City of San Jose, the County’s Housing Authority, and Jamboree Housing Corporation to develop a Homekey project, the Pavilion Inn, to serve unhoused young adults and young-parent families. The project will provide 18 units of housing for youth aging out of foster care, 21 units for homeless youth and young parent families, and three mentor units.

Spearheading a community wide collaborative effort to develop the Trusted Response Urgent Support Team (TRUST) was a win for our County. TRUST is a team of behavioral health staff and community members who respond to situations and assist people struggling with behavioral health challenges. A TRUST incident treats every situation on a case-by-case basis, providing responsive care and only involving law enforcement when needed.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, The people we serve tell us they find data collection burdensome, It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection


Bill Wilson Center

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.


Connect with nonprofit leaders


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Connect with nonprofit leaders


Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Bill Wilson Center

Board of directors
as of 01/18/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Mr. Ron Ricci

The Transparency Imperative

Term: 2016 -

Board co-chair

Helen Grays Jones

Meriwest Credit Union

Term: 2020 -

Elaine Burns

Merritt College

Alex Wilson

Mark Weiner

Versa Networks

Cynthia O'Leary

Intero Real Estate Services

Ron Ricci

The Transparency Imperative

Karen Guldan


Helen Grays Jones

Meriwest Credit Union

Tracy Hanson

Adobe (retired)

Sparky Harlan

Bill Wilson Center

René Alvarez

San Jose City College

Blake Balajadia

San Jose City College

Jessica Paz-Cedillos

School of Arts & Culture at MHP

Haley Bass

Santa Clara County Office of Education

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 1/18/2024

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, or other sexual orientations in the LGBTQIA+ community
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation


No data