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Emergency Shelter

Our rotational shelter program and warm hospitality is the foundation of the Family Promise model.

For over 20 years, congregations have opened their places of worship each night to host homeless families. The innovative model – using existing spaces like churches and enlisting help from congregations and volunteers motivated by compassion – has aided over 10,000 neighbors in need. Working with community resources, Family Promise provides comprehensive and targeted services, including extensive case management, at 1/3 the cost of traditional shelters. Moreover, Family Promise serves families of all compositions, often providing their only shelter option in a community.

And it works.

On average, 98% of those served in the shelter program can secure housing within three months. Due to the depth of services and community support, families remain housed, and we provide both prevention and stabilization services to increase our impact.


A typical day for a family in our shelter looks like this: they start their morning early, often waking up at 6:00 to get kids ready, eat breakfast, and leave the church by 7:00. Parents usually head back to the Day Center so kids can catch their school bus on time. Afterward, parents either go to work or stay at the Day Center to work with our case management team and search for jobs and housing. They may also have multiple appointments throughout the day, often using the bus for transportation. Parents generally return to the Day Center by 3:30 to get kids off their school bus and prepare them for the transition to the church. By 5:00, they head to the host church for a warm welcome, a meal, and some time to rest.

When a family joins our shelter program, they must quickly adjust to life in the Network. They balance work and school schedules with case management appointments and meals at the church while searching for housing. With the support of our host and supporting congregations and the people who volunteer over 18,500 hours annually, they can do this. By having such a large network of dedicated volunteers, families are surrounded by caring, positive individuals working tirelessly to ensure they always feel at home.


By bringing the community together on the issue of family homelessness, Family Promise addresses a major social problem in a holistic, effective way. Once the community becomes engaged, people understand the root causes of family homelessness and take steps to alleviate them. Over the last 20 years, Family Promise has created multiple community initiatives in addition to shelter — housing programs, homelessness prevention, financial literacy training, an on-site pet facility, and much more — that target the issues of poverty and homelessness directly related to the mid-Willamette Valley.


Not only does our 98% success rate mean many more families stably housed, it is also a tremendous cost savings to the community as diversion from far more expensive interventions. Our approach of keeping families together, identifying their strengths, and partnering with the community for solutions means that families are at much lower risk of returning to homelessness.


Family Promise changes lives. We've served almost 1,500  parents and children last year, giving them the ability to realize their true potential. We also change the lives of our almost 2,000 volunteers, giving them a meaningful outreach right in our own backyard.

Customer Support Representative

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