As a member organization of Your Way Home Montgomery County (YWH), IHN-ML is part of a countywide effort to make homelessness rare, brief, and non-recurring. Since 2014, when the YWH collective was first established, homelessness in Montgomery County has decreased by 47%. IHN-ML contributes to this successful outcome by utilizing a trauma-informed housing first model that includes low-barrier emergency shelter and intensive case management designed to help families quickly regain, and then maintain their housing. All of our services are person-centered, strength-based, flexible, and offered equally to all.

emergency shelter for homeless families montgomery county

Emergency Shelter:    

Twelve host congregations provide private sleeping accommodations for a week at a time, on a rotating schedule. With volunteer support from twenty four additional congregations, a daily dinner is served alongside compassionate, warm companionship. At any one time, three families are being sheltered through this network. Mornings and evenings, our Transportation Manager drives families in our agency van to and from our host congregations and Day Center.

The Day Center serves as “home base” and includes a community sitting area, access to laundry facilities and showers, a locked storage area for personal belongings, a kitchen, and a computer with Internet access that parents can use to search for housing and employment and children can use for homework.

Located above the Day Center is a one-bedroom apartment that can be made available to families who will have more success if they can shelter in place. These families have any number of special circumstances; for instance, a family with a special needs child that is overburdened by the weekly rotation of host congregations, a family with working hours that can’t be accommodated by our transportation schedule, or a family that is within four weeks or less of a housing opportunity.

Intensive Case Management: 

All adults receive person-centered case management one time per week for 2 hours, with additional, daily check-in sessions of 30 to 60 minutes each at the Day Center. Central to case management is each family’s Housing Stability Plan, which employs Housing First best practices, and includes supports necessary to achieving and maintaining housing, such as employment, childcare, transportation, and health care.

A team approach is utilized, consisting of close collaboration between the participant, our program manager, YWH’s Housing Resource Center staff, and case managers from other community resources. The goal is to improve awareness of and connectivity to community supports for each family so they can recognize the resources they have and can confidently access them well beyond their stay in an emergency shelter – this work greatly improves their economic self-sufficiency and long-term stability.

Further, families take goal-directed steps while in the residence that will lead to increased income; when they exit, they receive short term financial support to help maintain their housing and bridge potential wage gaps as they continue to take steps to build their income.

InterFaith Hospitality Network of the main line an affiliate of family promise helping homeless

Graduate Self Sufficiency Program

Under “normal circumstances,” recently housed families remain vulnerable to a housing crisis as they work to increase their income and build their assets. It often takes several years for a family to become housing stable and economically self-sufficient. When the pandemic struck, these families were particularly vulnerable, including our recent graduates, many of whom lost their job or experienced reduced wages. In response, we launched the Graduate Self Sufficiency Program in late March, providing on-going case management and comprehensive basic needs supports. Seven families immediately enrolled in the program and they have all maintained their housing.

How do I get Involved?

Make a Donation


We succeed through the help of volunteers like you, who care about making a difference in the community.

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Become a Partner

We have great partnerships with businesses of all kinds to help support our mission.

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Congregations Welcome

IHN-ML has active religious institutions that help provide services and support for families in need.

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We are proud of our families and all that they achieve during their stay in our network.

Here are some testimonials from families we helped, and Volunteers that work with IHN-ML.