COMMUNITY SUPPORTIVE LIVING SYSTEMS, INC.
12231 S. Emerald Chicago, Illinois 60628
Telephone (773) 291-0482 Fax (773) 291-0485
© CSLS.ORG ALL RIGHTS RESERVED 2019
Community Supportive Living Systems, Inc.(CSLS) was founded in 1985. It is a non-profit, 501 c (3) organization providing supportive housing for those who are homeless and lack the resources to make a full transition to independent living. CSLS’s overall goal is to empower homeless individuals to become independently stable re-integrating them back into the community. CSLS programming grew as a response to the growing problems of homelessness among African American youth and disabled individuals on Chicago’s south side. CSLS started in the home of its founder and CEO, Herschel L. Gamble, as a pilot program servicing five (5) homeless youth. The success of the pilot led to the beginning of its supportive housing programs for homeless young males. Eight years later, through a 1993 outcry from the community, CSLS was enlisted by the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH), the Chicago Department of Housing (CDOH), and the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) to respond to the alarming increase of HIV/AIDS among youth and homeless African Americans adults. CSLS did respond accordingly.
By 2000, CSLS had developed twelve (12) programs consisting of employment services and a full continuum of housing options (emergency, transitional, and permanent) which enabled many of those impacted with HIV/AIDS to die compassionately and with dignity and transitioned hundreds of others to a life of self-sufficient living within the community. For over two decades, through its participation on various nationally panels, and recognition from the United States Surgeon General, Dr. David Satcher, CSLS continue to be heralded both locally and nationally for its holistic and innovative approach in the delivery of comprehensive services and supportive housing to homeless people living with HIV/AIDS. Through the recent restructuring of most of its programming, CSLS has replicated itself by giving most of their funded housing programs to other agencies within the community. This has increased the number of HIV/AIDS housing providers on the South-Side of Chicago. CSLS has also mentored and shared in the start-up experience of other agencies desiring to provide supportive housing.
After restructuring, CSLS began to primarily focus on the Emerald House and Project X programs. Emerald House provides permanent supportive housing for men with HIV/AIDS who are chronically and terminally ill. Emerald House is in its fifteenth (15th) year of operation. Through the advances and personal improvement made by many of Emerald House residents, the theory that housing is health have been proven over and over again. CSLS has recently procured the land to built a state of the art 80-bed facility to provide affordable housing with the primary focus of prevention, education, wellness and supportive services for the chronically ill. Through this premiere project, CSLS shall continue to be a positive force in response to community’s housing needs.