No one should have to suffer, transition, or die alone.
Maitri (pronounced “my-tree”) is Sanskrit for “compassionate friendship.” We provide compassionate residential care for people in need of hospice or 24-hour medical care.
May all be free from suffering and the causes of suffering.
Maitri strives to provide care that is dignified, nonjudgmental, and unconditional.
the Hartford Street Zen Center today
Maitri began in 1987, when Issan Dorsey, a teacher at the Hartford Street Zen Center, took in a homeless student dying of AIDS. We soon grew to become a model eight-bed hospice in the heart of San Francisco’s Castro district, a place of solace in a community ravaged by AIDS.
As the dynamics of the epidemic changed (new drugs helped reduce mortality, but increased the number of patients living with severe debilitations), Maitri responded by doubling its capacity and extending care to non-hospice patients. In 1997, we relocated to a state-licensed, custom-designed facility, and Maitri’s board of directors received the Citibank Community Stewardship Award for their vision, foresight, and tenacity in seeing this project to completion.
In recent years, we’ve expanded our care to meet the needs of our community and begun serving people recovering from gender affirmation surgery. Today, more than 80% of our clients come to us for short-term medical respite and restorative care or gender affirmation care.
As of 2020, we’re offering BRANCH Aftercare to help support former residents as they transition into independence. BRANCH Aftercare includes ongoing therapy, case management, and invitations to events at Maitri.