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November 12, 2017 is
Orphan Sunday


Community Clergy Training
from the VA -
Pastoral care for rural
veterans and families.
Various locations/dates.








On a given night in the U.S., 564,708 people are homeless.
"Government alone cannot solve the problems we deal with in our correctional facilities, treatment centers, homeless shelters, and crisis centers--we need our faith-based and community partners."
- Dirk Kempthorne, former U.S. Secretary of the Interior and former U.S. Senator

Statistics and FAQs

Fact Sheet from the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness - "Ending Homelessness Among Families with Children in 2020" - A look at the statistics and the President's latest budget proposal for dealing with the issue.

Homeless Demographics from the National Alliance to End Homelessness

Homelessness Data Exchange - reports from the Department of Housing and Urban Development

Statistics and articles from the Department of Health and Human Services

Veteran Homelessness

Homeless Map by State

Speakers and

U.S. Missionaries

Steve Donaldson  

David Houck

Richard Smith 

Paul Palmer/Atlanta Dream Center staff - See recent PE News article about their work.

Training and Resources for Churches

The sporadically homeless or working poor often make their homes in low-cost motels.  Motel Church works to create Christian community by offering church, complete with music, message, baptisms, and fellowship, in these motel settings.  Contact them for assistance on starting a ministry in your area. 

 How can your church fit into a community approach to the problem of homelessness?  See these toolkits from the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness.

People living in homeless shelters and working to try to get back on their feet often use bicycles for transportation, and it would be a major loss to them if a bike were stolen or damaged.  Read this quick list of "5 Ways to Make Your Church More Bike-Friendly."

Association of Gospel Rescue Missions: Locate a mission for someone needing help, or access training and support if your church is considering getting involved in ministry to the homeless.

 Los Angeles Dream Center: Leadership training in the heart of ministry to the poor, homeless, and trafficked. 

Some cities have established guidelines for churches wishing to serve as emergency shelters, not only for natural disasters but also for temporary relief for the homeless during extremely cold or hot weather. The requirements usually include specifications for number of exits, maximum occupancy, fire extinguishers, whether snacks may be served, and the like. If your church is interested, search "emergency shelter requirements" and your location.


Additional Helpful Resources

Recent Articles

"Make Sure to Read This BEFORE You Make Care Packages for the Homeless" - Tips on what to include or not include, and why, that may surprise you.

"How the Homeless Population Is Changing: It's Older and Sicker" - a California professor of medicine reports on her research which reflects the increase in the homeless population over age 50 and their staggering health challenges. See also "Old and on the Street: The Graying of America's Homeless" from the New York Times.

For more on the topic of homeless men who are estranged from their children, see "The Looming Crisis of Family-Less Fathers and Its Cost to Society."  The author urges a rethinking of society's popular concept of fatherhood as peripheral, such as when an abortion is being considered or a relationship involving children breaks up, and calls for churches and other groups to offer help reconciling these men with children they may have wronged.

"I've Been Homeless 3 Times.  The Problem Isn't Drugs or Mental Illness--It's Poverty." - This personal story of a middle-aged woman's struggle to keep from being homeless weaves together statistics, failing policies, the problems faced by older workers in getting a job, and many more contributing factors for a thought-provoking look at why educated people who want to work may still have trouble getting ahead.

"If You Knew Their Whole Story" - a husband-wife photojournalist team decide to document the stories of the homeless in their city, and take volunteer helpers for a life-changing visit to local homeless camps.

From the Juvenile Justice Information Exchange - "We Are Failing our Children: Addressing Homelessness among System-Involved Youth" - Cites the prevalence of homelessness among youth exiting the foster care or juvenile court systems, and calls for something to be done about it.



Homeless Children and Education

National Center for Homeless Education

Contact List for Homeless Education


Homeless Veterans

 Map: "Ending Veteran Homelessness" - shows actively engaged communities

Calendar of "Stand Down" community events resourcing homeless veterans 

Veterans' resources from the National Center on Family Homelessness


Other Helpful Information

According to the National Coalition for the Homeless, approximately 20-25% of the nation's single adult homeless population suffers from some form of mental illness.  See "Mental Health" under the topic page "Chronic and Debilitating Illness" for resources and ways to help.

Addictions to alcohol, drugs, and tobacco are even more difficult for the homeless, and finding resources for quitting can be complicated. See infographics with helpful suggestions for recovery centers and other groups working with the homeless: "Substance Abuse and Homeless Community," from, and "Smoking: A Deadly Problem for the Homeless."

From the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) - "10 Strategies to End Chronic Homelessness" - Analysis and recommendations, including considerations of persons with disabilities, Medicaid information, and much more.

Some cities are assigning special "Homeless Outreach Teams" from their police departments.  These specially trained officers respond to any calls involving a homeless person, making referrals and helping them find the services they need.  Read about the Wichita, Kansas, team here.

Georgia Works!, a program in which former offenders, addicts, and other at-risk men commit to becoming clean and ending government dependence in exchange for job training and assistance with placement and housing, successfully transitioned 64 graduates to self-sufficiency this year.  Read inspiring testimonies from graduates and partnering employers here. 

Some organizations are looking at communities of affordable-rent tiny houses as a way to transition the homeless, particularly veterans, into stable living circumstances. See this helpful article, "Asking the Right Questions about Tiny Houses," from USICH.

Video: Homeless Hope

Best Practices for Providers

Other Interactive Resources

Agency Look Up by State

National Center on Family Homelessness: Webinars, training publications, trauma-informed care curriculum, children's services, veterans' services, and more.

Family and Youth Services Bureau: Inter-agency links, grants, training

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - grants, research

U.S. Council on Homelessness





Additional Information



View additional compassionate ministry topics and resource sharing guidelines, here.







Contact Info

Phone: 417-862-2781 x3267
Fax: 417-863-7276

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