We exist today because of one woman’s simple act of obedience.

AliceAnn Cantelow dreamed of hiking the Pacific Trail when she retired, but God seemed to have an entirely different adventure in mind. What began as a quiet, nagging feeling became a call she couldn’t ignore: AliceAnn knew God was asking her to help the homeless.

AliceAnn said yes.

That first year, AliceAnn started small: she helped families from her own 2-bedroom home. But she knew more women and children still needed help.

The next year, in 1984, AliceAnn purchased a larger home in Livermore with the help of a few other couples in the community. This 3-bedroom home provided women and children with up to 30 days of safe shelter.

Many of us look at a problem like “homelessness” and think: this is way too big for me. AliceAnn looked at it and thought: I’ll do what I can and trust God to do the rest.

In October of 1992, Shepherd’s Gate was forced to turn more than 500 women and children away due to a lack of space. In the face of such great need, AliceAnn and her team began plans to build a 3-acre Shepherd’s Gate campus in Livermore, California. They wanted to move beyond 30-day stays to provide long-term care for many more women and children.

In 1996, AliceAnn retired (again!), and now another act of obedience was required. Steve and Carla McRee sensed God calling them to guide this fledgling nonprofit through what they knew would be a challenging period of growth.

In May of 2000, the first phase of the Livermore campus opened, providing a home for up to 25 women and children. By 2005, a second Residence Hall and 5 2-bedroom cottages were added, bringing the full capacity to 70.

In 2004, Signature Properties offered to build Shepherd’s Gate a 7,600 square foot campus in Brentwood — and amazingly, they donated it free of charge! Shepherd’s Gate Brentwood opened its doors in January of 2006, and cares for up to 18 women and children. Shepherd’s Gate began with AliceAnn’s small act of obedience 30 years ago, but our efforts on behalf of homeless women and children continue today because countless other friends, volunteers, and donors have also said “yes” to God’s call.

You make our work possible and we couldn’t be more grateful. Currently, we’ve served over 11,000 women and children, but many more are still in need.

Carol Patterson is the new Chief Executive Officer of Shepherd’s Gate, and began January 15, 2018. Carol was a senior executive at Cityteam corporate headquarters in San Jose for over 17 years, focused on homelessness and addiction. Her expertise in nonprofit ministry, finance, and operations positions her to be a visionary leader for our organization.

However, it is Carol’s tremendous passion for homeless and abused women and children in the Bay Area that is her most important asset. She is deeply committed to Christ and helping more women break the cycles of homelessness, abuse, and addiction. Carol will continue Shepherd’s Gate’s mission and advance our programs to help even more women and children transform their lives. Our commitment has always been and will continue to be sharing the love of Christ with abused and homeless women and children.

Shepherd’s Gate Locations

1660 Portola Avenue
Livermore, CA 94551
United States
(925) 443-4283

605 Sycamore Ave
Brentwood, CA 94513
United States
(925) 308-7507