Dorothy's Place logo, showing a heart within a home

Dorothy's Place

co-operating out of poverty

Chinatown Health Services Center

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  • People in hard hats taking a construction tour

    Jill gives tours of Chinatown Health Services Center.

  • Jill Allen speaking at a podium in front of the China Town Health Center

    Chinatown Health Services Center preview press conference.

  • Line of people in hard hats who are taking a construction tour

    Tour of Chinatown Health Services Center.

  • Jill Allen accepting a check for the Chinatown Health Center
  • Lobby of the new Chinatown Health Center

    Lobby of the Chinatown Health Services Center.

  • Plaque in memory of Mr. and Mrs. Leon de Asis

The Chinatown Health Services Center (CHSC) is operated by Dorothy’s Place and the City of Salinas. Located at 115 E. Lake St., the CHSC offers case management and special programs like addiction services, hepatitis screenings, needle exchange programs, and clinical visits.

The CHSC offers facilities for our guests and clients to use restrooms and take a hot shower at no cost. There is also a place to fill up water containers. This fully monitored and safe facility provides comfort and privacy to members of our community.

The CHSC is also used by our social worker staff to conduct interviews and discussions with our clients. There is even space for community-based programs to provide assistance to members of our community. 

Hours: 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.

To learn more about these services, or become a supporter, watch the video or click on the corresponding button below.  

Being Homeless in the City of Salinas and Monterey County


  • On January 28, 2015, 867 homeless people were counted in the City of Salinas as part of the Monterey County Homeless Census and Survey, an increase of 63% since 2013.
  • The homeless population in the rest of Monterey County has decreased since 2013 by 30%.
  • 73% of people who are homeless in Salinas are unsheltered, meaning they live on the street, in abandoned buildings, in vehicles, or in encampments. That is 7% more than the homeless in the rest of Monterey County.
  • Young homeless women are four to 31 times more likely to die early as housed young women. The average life expectancy in the homeless population is estimated between 42 and 52 years, compared to 78 years in the general population.


The principal causes of food insecurity (living in constant fear of not being able to feed oneself or one’s family) in the United States are:

  • Unemployment
  • High housing costs
  • Low wages and poverty
  • Lack of access to food stamps
  • Medical or health costs

The homeless rank good health, a steady job, income, and housing above obtaining food, which are all of those same factors mentioned above that are causes of food insecurity.

Hunger causes:

  • Impaired concentration, reduced alertness and comprehension, and poor judgment
  • Gastrointestinal distress, dizziness, headaches, reduced strength, and poor motor control
  • Significant increases in social introversion, irritability, anxiety, anger, and depression

Mental Illness and Addiction

For many homeless people, substance abuse co-occurs with mental illness. Often, people with untreated mental illnesses use street drugs as an inappropriate form of self-medication. Many programs for homeless people with mental illnesses do not accept people with substance abuse disorders, and many programs for homeless substance abusers do not treat people with mental illnesses.

  • 29% with drug or alcohol abuse
  • 28% with psychiatric or emotional conditions
  • 17% with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • 8% with traumatic brain injury

Successful supported housing programs include outreach and engagement workers, a variety of flexible treatment options to choose from, and services to help people reintegrate into their communities.


Two trends are largely responsible for the rise in homelessness over the past 20-25 years: a growing shortage of affordable rental housing and a simultaneous increase in poverty. Homelessness and poverty are inextricably linked. Poor people are frequently unable to pay for housing, food, childcare, health care, and education. If you are poor, you are essentially an illness, an accident, or a paycheck away from living on the streets.

Number of people living below poverty level (US Census 2010):

  • 15.4% of the people in the United States
  • 15.9% of the people in California
  • 17% of the people in Monterey County
  • 21% of the people in Salinas

Declining wages have put housing out of reach for many workers: in every state, more than minimum wage is required to afford a 1 or 2 bedroom apartment at Fair Market Rent. In the 2008 Conference of Mayors report, 11 out of 19 cities reported an increase in employed homeless people.

Sponsorship Opportunities

We are seeking social justice and health justice minded sponsors for the operation of the Chinatown Health Services Center.

Franciscan Workers (Dorothy’s Place) is the coordinating agent for services in the Chinatown Health Services Center, a partnership between the City of Salinas and Franciscan Workers of Junipero Serra. We facilitate use of the Center for all agencies providing services there, but we also ourselves provide case managers, clinical supervision, a facility manager, and the restroom and shower staff. Although we have some initial grant funding and an agreement with Shoreline Workforce Development (that will subsidize part of the restroom/shower staff), we must seek sponsorships and fundraise annually to ensure the operation of the Center.

Please consider the following sponsorship opportunities, which come with sponsor recognition in the facility, but also know that any size sponsorship is appreciated!

You can sponsor, for one year:

  • Program manager - $40,000
  • Case manager - $29,000
  • Clinical supervisor - $20,000
  • Hire of a client onto the restroom/shower staff - $14,500
  • Sanitation supplies - $10,000

Facility Floor-Plan and Naming Opportunities

Chinatown Health Service Center Investor Naming Opportunities

Floor plan: Chinatown Health Service Center Investor Naming Opportunities

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Multi-Purpose Training Room

Floor plan: Multi-Purpose Training Room

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Four Out-Patient Treatment/Counseling Rooms

Floor plan: Four Out-Patient Treatment/Counseling Rooms

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Welcome Center

Floor plan: Welcome Center

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Hygiene Center

Fllor plan: Hygiene Center

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Shower Center

Floor plan: Shower Center

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Towel Laundry

Floor plan: Towel Laundry

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Secure Night Entry

Floor plan: Secure Night Entry

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Drinking Water Fill-up Station

Floor plan: Drinking Water Fill-up Station

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