We Are BSL
Building Bridges of Hope
A stable home helps our residents get adequate treatment and start on the path toward recovery. BSL's supportive housing combines affordable housing with coordinated services to enable our residents to live as independently as possible.
Big Sister League of San Diego (BSL) is a nonprofit organization providing transitional and permanent supportive housing for adult women. The Big Sister League has provided housing for women in San Diego for over 70 years. Our staff manage two 15-bed residences in the Hillcrest area and provide day programming for our residents. BSL's services are designed to assist women affected by mental health issues, homelessness, trauma, and domestic abuse. As such, BSL requires residents be under the care of a psychiatrist to meet additional mental health needs.
BSL provides transitional and permanent supportive housing for adult women. Our staff manage two 15-bed residences in San Diego and provide day programming for our residents.
Our residents are required to participate in community activities to promote independence. This typically takes the form of volunteer work, adult education courses, or seeking employment.
Our goal is to provide a safe environment for women, help them increase independence and self-esteem, assist with realistic goal attainment, have regular contact with their families, and become involved members of their respective communities.
Our mission is to provide supportive housing for women affected by mental illness, homelessness, trauma, and domestic abuse with services designed to encourage confidence, self-esteem, and independence.
We are dedicated to bettering women's lives with resident-centered, recovery-oriented, supportive housing services and programs.
We commit to helping women live stably in the community.
We foster an environment of optimism for the women we support.
We partner with value-aligned people to expand our reach.
We empower women to gain independence and change their life.
Nuria joined the BSL team in May 2020 and manages both the Redwood and Fourth Ave. houses. She recently graduated from UC San Diego with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a specialization in Clinical Psychology.
Big Sister League of San Diego was established to serve the needs of women and children unable to find suitable housing in San Diego. During the war, many women traveled to San Diego to join husbands and boyfriends only to find that the men had already been sent to fight in the Pacific. Pursuant to local law, any woman without housing and on the street after 10 p.m. was taken to jail and separated from her children who were sent to Hillcrest Receiving Home.
Addressing this crisis, Mrs. Frances Woods and a small group of downtown professional women organized the Big Sister League, and the City of Hillcrest donated a home on Front Street to provide housing for 15 women and their children. Nightly, Mrs. Woods and her colleagues arrived at the jail to advocate on behalf of the homeless women, ultimately providing some of them a safe and comfortable place to stay.
To learn more about our history, please click here.
An independent local charitable organization, BSL became a nonprofit corporation in 1942.
Board of Directors
If you are interested in joining the board, please visit the Join the Board webpage.
The Board of Directors supports the work of the Big Sister League of San Diego and provides mission-based
leadership and strategic governance. In consultation with the Executive Director, the Board guides the organization in realizing our mission of providing supportive housing for women in our community as well as providing fiduciary oversight.
Nilab Rahyar Tolton
Kay Lee Sperling
Laura Wolf Stein
Jessica Aminoff, President
Jessica Lees, Vice President
Nicole Fusco, Treasurer
Brianne Murphy, Secretary