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February 10, 2016

Bay Area Boom Could Force Out Nuns' Charity for Homeless

A faith-based soup kitchen in San Francisco's Tenderloin district is facing eviction as the city's tech-fueled economic boom sends rents in even gritty city neighborhoods spiraling up, reports, the Associated Press.

The sisters of Fraternite Notre Dame's Mary of Nazareth House, which serves lunch and dinner several times a week to some 300 homeless people, say their monthly payments are going up by more than 50 percent, from $3,465 to $5,500 a month. The soup kitchen has operated since 2008 on a derelict street long associated with homelessness and drug use but within walking distance of the middle Market Street area, which is home to Twitter and has been undergoing a revitalization.

The nuns say they have asked the building's owner for more time to find a cheaper site for the charity. A lawyer for the landlord said Tuesday that "no eviction is going forward" and the owner will meet with the nuns this week. Michael Pappas, executive director of the San Francisco Interfaith Council, said religious charities across the city are struggling with rising rents.