Team Up With Us for Community Impact

Big props to our amazing community! We’re always on the hunt for purpose-driven people like you who’ve got a fire for taking action. Whether it’s joining hands for a cleanup, offering a kind word on the streets, or helping us out with the real-gritty like finance and admin tasks, there’s a place for you here with us.

UCP has built a community that’s vibrant, connected, and full of heart. Reach out and let’s chat about how you can make your mark. Every effort counts, and yours could be the spark we need.

Urban Compassion Project

"Heard Vincent speak at Amy Cheney event. Love the work you do and the spirit in which you do it."

Joan Galvez

"This is to honor Teddy Bear. He seemed to have really turned his life around, and you and your extended community helped make it happen. In solidarity . . . PM"

Phyliss Martinez

"I will send in a monthly contribution. I am not the type who wants to volunteer at this time but at least I can help financially. Thank you."

Joseph (Gage) Stephens

"The work you do is so immensely valuable. Thank you for serving the unhoused and the City of Oakland."

Jasmine Stitt

"This is in memory of our sister-in-law, Jennifer Cole, who volunteered with your organization."

Graham & Amy L. Huey

"Met at Keep Oakland Beautiful event. Really inspired by the work you do."

Anonymous

"Love what y'all do. It was an honor meeting and recording a podcast (Storied SF) with Vincent"

Jeff Hunt

"I appreciate everything this organization does to help our community members"

Anonymous

"Thank you Vincent and team for all your work at Fitzgerald Park. You are saving lives."

Chris Moore

Meet some of our Amazing Team!

Learn about the volunteers and team who go above and beyond in their service.

Lee Heward

Lee Heward

Director of Operations

Lee Heward is our Director of Operations, having started as a volunteer upon moving to Oakland from Ohio in 2022. Giving back to our community and helping those in need is something he highly values and that motivates him every day.

In college Lee studied physics and astronomy, then Japanese pedagogy in grad school, having spent 9 years living in Japan.

In his free time he enjoys reading books (manga too of course!), hiking, cooking, and travel.

Lee is very excited about the future of UCP and all the initiatives we have planned to make the Bay Area a better place. Please reach out to him at lee.h@urbancompassionproject.org with any questions you may have regarding volunteering, donations, distribution, and cleanups.

Team up with UCP

We are dedicated to improving the lives of the unhoused, not just in Oakland and the Bay Area but way beyond. Your involvement with UCP helps in building a future where homelessness isn’t a life sentence. Please volunteer, donation, and spreading the word. UCP is committed to a better, more compassionate tomorrow. We envision a world where everyone, regardless of their current circumstances, has access to a life of safety, dignity, and self-sufficiency.

Meet our Amazing Board!

Our national office, located in Oakland, California, is a central hub of activity for our locations across the country, and for people and organizations that seek to partner with Urban Compassion Project. Our dedicated board manages the majority of our financial, technological, development, and programmatic operations, ensuring that we continue to grow and serve our communities. We are growing quickly, please reach out to us at info@urbancompassionproject.org if you are interested in administrative volunteer opportunities or joining our board.

Join Our Team

Join Our Team

Seeking a Skilled Accountant/CPA to Strengthen Our Financial Oversight

UCP seeks a volunteer Accountant/CPA to enhance our financial oversight and strategy.

We Value Diversity: We strongly encourage applications from BIPOC, LGBTQ+ individuals, and those with lived experiences, including former homelessness, to bring diverse perspectives and insights to our team.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Manage and oversee financial processes
  • Ensure accurate financial reporting and compliance
  • Advise on budgeting and financial planning

Ideal Candidate:

  • CPA certification or relevant accounting experience
  • Passionate about social impact and community service
  • Excellent analytical and organizational skills

Why Volunteer With Us?

  • Make a meaningful difference in the community
  • Be part of a compassionate and inclusive team
  • Gain experience and insights in nonprofit financial management

Join us in our mission to foster hope and change lives. To apply, please send your resume and a brief introduction to info@urbancompassionproject.org

Lindsay Pfeiffer

Lindsay Pfeiffer

Social Innovation

As a passionate advocate for social innovation and community engagement, I dedicate much of my career to leveraging technology and strategic branding to amplify the impact of mission-driven organizations

My engagement with social causes and technology has always been intertwined, though I fought tech for a while, it has now shaped my career and is an incredible tool for positive impact. Being part of various ‘tech for good’ projects, it was during my tenure as Bay Area Outreach Specialist with Miracle Messages, where I met Vincent.

At UCP, I am dedicated to leveraging technology to effectively bridge the gap between our community’s needs and the solutions we can provide.

Beyond my commitment to UCP, I founded Bay Laurel Solutions, a boutique web development and branding agency that I have partnered with a developer friend that I met through a AseelApp, an online platform that focuses on creating impactful campaigns and providing direct humanitarian aid in Afghanistan and Turkey.

At Bay Laurel Solutions, we support small businesses, nonprofits, and creatives in amplifying their online presence, with each project aimed at fostering a more connected global community. We believe in the transformative power of collaboration and the unique contributions each individual can make towards creating meaningful change.

For any inquiries about tech, the website, social media collaborations or to find out how you can contribute to our initiatives at UCP, please don’t hesitate to get in touch at lindsay.p@urbancompassionproject.org

Vincent Williams

Vincent Williams

Founder & Executive Director

A native of Oakland born at Highland hospital, at 6 months old, Vincent was placed into foster care. At age 9, he became unhoused, and would remain that way until he was 33.

The whole time, Vincent cycled through the sytem of countless foster homes, group homes, juvenile halls, and mental health facilities, along with a 19 year drug addiction. After serving nearly five years of a seven-year sentence, Vincent was released from the California Department of Corrections in 2019, only to face homelessness once again. Determined not to fall back into life on the streets, he turned his attention to improving public spaces in his community, which he saw were neglected. Vincent embarked on a mission to clean parks and encampments, involving the unhoused in the process and ensuring they had the necessary tools for ongoing sustainability. This initiative led to the creation of the Urban Compassion Project, aimed at fostering safer and more humane public areas for everyone, irrespective of their background.

Vincent’s work is influenced by his tenure as Operations Manager and Benefits Manager at The Oakland LGBTQ Community Center, which he credits for his personal growth and ability to express his compassion through community service. His efforts have earned him accolades from the City of Oakland for his contributions to making the city cleaner and more vibrant, as well as recognition as Person of the Year by The Coalition for a Better Oakland and a Jefferson Award in 2021 for his community engagement.

Vincent is passionate about serving society and advocating for human rights, particularly focusing on at-risk youth and the rights of people of color and the unhoused. His journey reflects a commitment to change through individual action and community involvement. For public speaking engagements or to learn more about his district work and training programs, Vincent can be contacted at Vincent@urbancompassionproject.org.

Paige Voorhees

Paige Voorhees

Secretary

Paige Voorhees is an attorney whose practice involves advice and representation in all aspects of tax planning, trusts, and estates, and is currently an Associate with the law firm of Perkins Coie LLP.

Paige is a proud East Bay native, and currently lives in West Oakland. Paige is a graduate of UCLA (class of 2013, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa) and the University of Chicago Law School (class of 2016).

She has been an LGBTQ+ activist since she was a teenager and previously worked at Lambda Legal in Los Angeles as a law clerk. She was awarded the Grant Folland Scholarship in 2015 for her commitment to the advocacy on behalf of, and legal contributions to, the LGBTQ+ community.

She started attending UCP clean ups in 2021 and was inspired by the overwhelmingly positive impact the organization was having on her unhoused brothers and sisters. As a privileged person living on stolen Ohlone land, she has always found it imperative to donate time and money to organizations assisting the unhoused and felt that UCP’s compassionate, grassroots-based approach was a breath of fresh air compared to other organizations that tend to be overly hierarchical and sterile.

Paige want to see UCP start getting grants and corporate sponsorships so we can start multiplying our impact–multiple clean-ups a week, better services for the unhoused (potentially helping pay for washrooms, community gardens, etc.), and full-time employees who are dedicated resources for our unhoused brothers and sisters.

Paige was a professional dancer for 10 years (before law school) and worked with many Emmy-nominated choreographers during her time, and was even featured in a national commercial in 2011!

Supriya Golas

Supriya Golas

President

From running beekeeping trainings in rural Kenya to developing web-based simulations for the classroom, Supriya is passionate about creating impact. Her day job is financial literacy programs and products at Intuit. She believes in the importance of fighting on behalf of underserved communities around the globe, especially within one's own community.

Upon moving to Oakland, California in July 2020, Supriya grew increasingly concerned with the state of the Bay Area, one of the most expensive places in the world, yet plagued by stark economic between the richest and poorest populations in the country. The rampant disregard for the unhoused and the plight of illegal dumping onto encampments disheartened her. She felt the need to do something for the most vulnerable and to help bring dignity to the unhoused populations of the East Bay. Vincent’s story inspired her to take action.

During her free time, Supriya also enjoys competitive scrabble, exploring the outdoors with her rescue pitbull, and listening to funky music. She is currently pursuing a part-time MBA from the University of California at Berkeley.

Melanie Burke

Melanie Burke

Director of Development

Originally from Idaho, Mel has lived in Oregon and California for the last 12 years. She left for school and made her way down the coast, following first her education and then someone else's job before making the Bay Area her home. Sbe hasn't met a glass of whiskey sbe didn't love or a book she didn't want to read and the home she shares with her husband and two dogs is filled with both.

Mel has lived in Oakland for almost 6 years and love it more every day. She has a Bachelors in journalism and Spanish from the University of Oregon and will have her Masters of Arts in Communication, Healthcare from Johns Hopkins University in Spring of ’22. She’s had enough jobs to make her interesting as a writer–dog walker, ride share driver, sandwich artist, clickbait title crafter, content strategist, and now, finally, culture freelancer.

She volunteers communications work with Techtonica, where she writes grant applications and press releases, and she packages book requests for the Prison Literature Project in Berkeley. With Urban Compassion Project, she attends cleanups and writes grant applications.

She joined UCP because she promised herself when life got stable, she’d find something boots-on-the-ground in her community to volunteer with. She likes that UCP takes action to back up their ideals.

She’d like to see UCP grow and flourish from the benefit of long-term funding and partnerships. She’s heard Vincent talk about his plans for UCP in the farther future (but not so far) and she thinks they’re things Oakland will benefit hugely from. She wants to see UCP bring the compassion and love this city really needs and deserves.

She has 2.5 book manuscripts that she’s editing/querying this year. It’s a wild ride trying to be a published author and she’s barely getting settled in the seat.

People Housed

Tons of Trash Removed

Volunteer Participation

Frequently Asked Questions:

How will my donation be used?

Donations are crucial for funding our cleanups, resource distributions, and case management services. Your support helps us provide essentials like food, clothing, and hygiene products, and contributes to our efforts in rehousing. 

Is my donation tax-deductible?

Yes, we are a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, your contribution to UCP is tax-deductible.

Tax EIN 86-2807260

 

Can I volunteer my time instead of donating money?

Absolutely! We value the time and skills of our volunteers. There are many ways to get involved, from participating in cleanups to assisting in our administrative tasks. 

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