Hotel help
December 3, 2010 7:25 AM   Subscribe

Are there any charity or religious organizations that help people who are between apartments/homes pay for temporary lodging in hotels or motels?

I work at a hotel and have been dealing with a guest who is in such circumstances over the last few days. There is only one homeless shelter within reasonable distance for this person and it has a waiting list a mile long. A Google search wasn't terribly revealing. Bonus points for organizations in or around Chicago (within, say, 65 miles).
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Don't know if this is applicable to this particular circumstance or not, but for future reference, in the US (state of Virginia), Social Services offers eviction _prevention_ by helping with rent payments, if you apply & qualify for that assistance. Doesn't help much after the fact, but it's useful information to know.
posted by Ys at 7:49 AM on December 3, 2010

I think you want to contact Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago. They've got a Homeless Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program.

They're connected with 311, but their suburban number is 877-426-6515.
posted by valkyryn at 8:15 AM on December 3, 2010

Call is a national phone number that provides local social service help. You can also go to their website at and search for local info.
posted by MsKim at 8:49 AM on December 3, 2010

Willow Creek Community Church is a giagantic megachurch in the Chicago area with all kinds of ministries (car repair, food pantry, etc.). Your guest might check to see if they have any ministries that could help your guest.
posted by Meg_Murry at 10:02 AM on December 3, 2010

Most churches have a fund that they can usually give to travellers in need. Whether it's for some food, some gas, or a place to stay. The smaller the church, the less you will be given, but a moderate sized place should be able to put you up for a day or two. Much more than that might be stretching it a bit, but they may have other ministries in place to help out...possibly including staying in a room in the church (my church has done that a time or two, until one evening they came out of the room and offered weed to the youth in the building)...

good times.
posted by AltReality at 11:16 AM on December 3, 2010

I work at a church on the side, and we occasionally get calls from hotels and the like.

Please, if you think this person is worth risking your reputation on, mention that fact to a church if you call one.

If the person in question has been involved in some sketchy stuff or have caused any trouble, don't go to bat for them on the reputation question (but still call).

I know well-meaning people who are unintentionally damaging their reputation by referring people who then get into situations like the one AltReality mentioned. It's not like churches want to shun people; quite the opposite, but they have to protect their members and their members' children.

We had a guy come through, start receiving assistance, and then he started taking pictures of all the kids...then he moved on to a women's class and started taking pictures of all the women...what a disaster that guy was. (good times!)
posted by circular at 11:27 AM on December 3, 2010

Also, you don't say where this person is exactly, but if it's in the western suburbs of Chicago, I suggest contacting West Suburban Pads, which helps exactly the sorts of people facing the circumstances that your guest is facing.

If you're willing to give more specific information over MeMail, let me know. I work at an interim housing shelter on the West Side of Chicago, and I'm also fairly aware of resources available on the North Side (or at least can get in touch with people who are).
posted by tivalasvegas at 4:30 PM on December 5, 2010

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