About Us

Our mission at St. Stephen's Human Services is Ending Homelessness.

Our goal is to support individuals and families experiencing homelessness in achieving permanent, affordable housing. We progress toward this goal through street outreach, shelter, and housing programs. We meet people where they are and work together toward self-sufficiency and housing stability.

We envision a community in which housing instability is rare, brief and non-recurring, ending homelessness as we know it.


About Us
About Us


Here are a few personal stories that demonstrate the ways St. Stephen's ends homelessness.

Find impact statistics from our Fiscal Year 2019 (July 2018 - June 2019) on the "What We Do" tab.


Tom's Story

Tom is a library patron who has lived outside for most of his adult life, preferring the streets to sleeping in an overcrowded shelter. Being homeless increased his risk of illness, injury and death, but over the years, Tom figured out how to survive. He had never accessed shelter until recently, when he became interested in finding a permanent home. Tom began taking his medication and decided to get sober. He worked with Kate on a housing assessment and application.

Tom thought he’d have a long wait, but opportunity came quickly. The housing provider contacted Kate at the library, and indicated that they had an open appointment where another client was a no-show. If Tom could come immediately, they could work with him to attain suitable housing.

Kate had one hour to find Tom. Because she had established a relationship with him, she knew what time Tom was likely to arrive in the library and what seating area he favored. Not only was Tom able to make the appointment, he moved into housing that same day. He happily told Kate, “I slept so hard that first night!” Having a safe and stable place to live provides peace of mind.

Rose's Story

It was New Year’s Eve 2009 when Rose met St. Stephen’s Street Outreach team. She was sitting on the sidewalk in front of Target on Nicollet Mall. It was six degrees above zero and Rose had nowhere to go, having just arrived in Minneapolis two days earlier.

It hadn’t always been like this. Rose had owned a nice home and car, and provided for her children by working multiple jobs. Her bills were paid. But she drank to forget past trauma and addiction overtook her life.

Rose slept outside on the streets or in the skyways. Sometimes, she stayed with family members. She wanted a place of her own. St. Stephen’s found a home for Rose in 2011, but her time in housing lasted just two weeks before Rose landed back in jail. “I’ve been locked up a lot and St. Stephen’s has been there for me the whole time. I was drinking so much, I would miss my appointments. And then they’d come find me. I put them through hell."

St. Stephen’s came alongside Rose as an advocate, believing that through housing stability, Rose could overcome the barriers that led to criminal behavior and stabilize her life. After completing HOMES Court, Rose made the decision to get sober, and has maintained sobriety with no recidivism in the criminal justice system.

In June of 2016, St. Stephen’s found a place for Rose to live. Now sober for two years and stably housed for over one year, Rose is rapidly moving toward self-sufficiency. 

Marco's Story

Imagine being a single parent when your part-time job barely covers the cost of daycare, leaving little to live on. This was Marco’s story. Feeding his four children came ahead of paying the rent.

His greatest fear was what lay ahead for his children.

Eventually, he made the difficult decision to enter emergency family shelter. That way, he could continue to work and save money, and his children would have a warm place to live, childcare, and meals until he found a better job and a new home for his family. Marco was connected with a case manager in St. Stephen’s Critical Time Intervention program, which helps vulnerable families with a mental health diagnosis transition to housing stability with rental assistance and community supports. After a month, St. Stephen’s found a home for Marco and his children. Marco was able to access mental health services and focus on healing his family. He and his children attended weekly counseling sessions and he began to see positive changes in their behavior. The children’s mother completed addiction recovery treatment and rejoined the family to share in the care of her children, which allowed Marco to work more hours.

Knowing his family was supported, Marco’s work ethic flourished and he was soon offered a full-time job with a better salary.



Equity: Housing is a basic human right.

Dignity: Every person deserves to be treated with dignity and respect.

Integrity: We expect honesty and accountability of ourselves and others.

Self-Determination: Each person has the ability to know and realize their own success.

Mutual Responsibility: Investing in our neighbors results in a healthy community for all.




St. Stephen’s Human Services began its work in the 1960s, when members of St. Stephen’s Church in Minneapolis began offering programs for the poor and homeless. These programs were staffed by parish volunteers. While our current programs remain true to the social justice teachings on which they were founded, St. Stephen’s Human Services became an independent non-profit organization in 2002. 


Homelessness Ends With You.

Learn more about homelessness in Minnesota.
Send a note to your legislator to advocate for systems change.
You can make a difference.


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