2 TIME EMMY AWARD WINNER
"STEP UP," Jerri Sher's EMMY Award winning film tells the story of Leroy, a depressed, homeless man for 16 years who finds relief from a charity who gave him his first permanent home.
Thirty years ago, Susan Dempsay's son was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and he had nowhere to go to keep busy or fit in. He could not work and she wanted to start an organization to have a place where he could hang out and be with others like himself. From Susan’s vision and determination STEP UP was born and during the past 30 years this amazing group has provided 750 homes to homeless people with mental health issues. Over 50% of homeless individuals suffer from depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Through the help of the STEP UP staff, the members have turned their lives around and have the support they need to continue living in society. They provide food and programs for homeless individuals in the Los Angeles area. They also provide shower and laundry facilities to non-residents as well as art programs for 18-25 year olds. President Bill Clinton inaugurated another STEP UP housing complex in Hollywood in 2013.
Today, the organization has grown to a nine million dollar annual budget and has helped countless individuals throughout the state of California. Other states are now using this charity as a model because of its unique success.