Our Stories

News and insights from The Night Ministry community.

Housing Instability and Inadequacy Common among Health Outreach Bus Clients

180922-NightMinistry-Bus-NorthLawndale-1219 Surveys of visitors to the Health Outreach Bus tell us that 25% of those whom we serve at the Bus are literally homeless, living on the streets, in a shelter, or in a place not meant for human habitation.
Housing instability and inadequacy are challenges that impact nearly all of the visitors to The Night Ministry's Health Outreach Bus. That's according to findings from the sixth annual Outreach & Health Ministry (OHM) Street Survey, conducted by the agency's Mission Fulfillment department earlier this year. One in every four Bus guests report h...
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The Night Ministry Transitions out of Its Ravenswood Headquarters

moving-photo Members of The Night Ministry staff load boxes in preparation for the agency's departure from its Ravenswood office.
After 17 years in the neighborhood, The Night Ministry is moving its home office out of Ravenswood. The Chicago-based non-profit, whose mission is to provide housing, health care, and human connection to individuals struggling with homelessness or poverty, will be relocating its central administration, as well as Health Outreach staff, to a fa...
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179 Hits

Latest 1735 Construction Photos

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Construction continues at 1735 North Ashland, the new home of The Crib overnight shelter, Outreach & Health Ministry Program, and central administration.
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101 Hits

The Night Ministry’s President Reflects on Values During Challenging Times

2019Gala294 Paul W. Hamann is President & CEO of The Night Ministry
Dear Friends, Throughout life, we define who we are as individuals and as a society. We question our values and beliefs – the foundations of our motivation to behave in certain ways – clarify them, change them, and reaffirm them. Our individual lives and communal stories are full of moments when we bear witness to or participate in events that make...
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1568 Hits

Criminalization Perpetuates the Cycle of Homelessness

criminalization Laws criminalizing homelessness, including ordinances banning camping in public places, have increased by more than 40% in major American cities over the last decade, according to The National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty.
Homelessness is not a crime, but in municipalities across the country, more and more individuals experiencing homelessness face jail time or fines for sleeping on the sidewalk or in a car, camping in a public place, panhandling, or engaging in other activities they must do to simply survive on the streets. "It's a vicious cycle," said Sylvia Hibbar...
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1009 Hits

The Associate Board Rededicates to Service and Partnership Building

Associate-Board Members of The Night Ministry’s Associate Board at last year’s Night Lights, their annual gala.
By Benita Natalini and Chintan Mehta, Co-Presidents, The Associate Board At this year's Lighting Up the Night, The Night Ministry's Annual Awards Dinner & Auction, President & CEO, Paul W. Hamann, Associate Board member Sam Ritchey, and other speakers provided reflections on the importance of human connection to the mission of The Night Min...
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1013 Hits

Dr. Jim Withers, Street Medicine Pioneer, Visits The Night Ministry

withers Dr. Jim Withers (second from the right) and Dr. Denise Kohl, Street Medicine Institute Fellow (second from the left), with The Night Ministry's Street Medicine staff.
In the early 1990s, Dr. Jim Withers, a teaching physician at a Pittsburgh hospital, found himself frustrated by attitudes among the medical community that were antithetical to the goals of the profession. "When people come for health care, they're forced into boxes that we created for them," Withers said. "I suddenly put these glasses on and realiz...
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1623 Hits

Street Medicine: A New Frontier in Homeless Outreach Services

DSC_3136 The Night Ministry's Street Medicine Program brings health care and supportive services directly to Chicago's unsheltered homeless population. Photo by Lloyd DeGrane.
On Friday, September 13, 2019, The Night Ministry's President & CEO, Paul W. Hamann, spoke to medical professionals and supporters of The Night Ministry's mission in a special event with Dr. Jim Withers, Medical Director of Operation Safety Net at Pittsburgh Mercy Health System and a pioneer in the field of street medicine. Below you'll fi...
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1264 Hits

Practicing on the Streets Is a Good Fit for Nurse Practitioner Stephan Koruba

Stephan Senior Nurse Practitioner, Stephan Koruba, consults with a patient about foot care in the Street Medicine Van.
Having made house calls while working for a safety net clinic in suburban Aurora, The Night Ministry's Senior Nurse Practitioner, Stephan Koruba, has experience bringing health care directly to people where they live. He's still doing that today as a member of the Street Medicine Team, but most of the patients he sees these days don't have a perman...
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740 Hits

The Associate Board Gets Ready for Night Lights 2019

46492769_902055326650981_8812001486583103488_o Night Lights in the Annual Gala of The Associate Board, which supports the mission of The Night Ministry through volunteering, fundraising, and advocacy opportunities targeted towards young professionals.
The Night Ministry's Associate Board is once again preparing for the annual Night Lights Gala, our biggest event of the year, which raises funds in support of The Night Ministry's work providing housing, health care, critical outreach, and other social services to Chicago's most vulnerable populations. This year, we're setting our most ambitious fu...
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Construction Work Begins at 1735 North Ashland

We have begun construction work inside 1735 North Ashland, the new home of The Night Ministry's central office, Health Outreach Bus Program, and our overnight shelter for young adults, The Crib. The first step was gutting the second and third floors of the building so we could build out our open office plan. The first floor, where The Cri...
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1822 Hits

Heat-Related Illness a Danger for Homeless

DeGraneWest-Side-Chicago-min-min High blood pressure can be exacerbated by hot weather. Photo by Lloyd DeGrane.
While winter weather poses dangers for individuals experiencing homelessness, living on the streets during the summer can create its own set of challenges. Staff members with The Night Ministry's Health Outreach Bus and Street Medicine programs educate their clients about potential heat-related health conditions such as heat exhaustion and stroke, ...
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923 Hits

Celebrating Human Connection

During Lighting Up the Night, our Annual Awards Dinner & Auction, The Night Ministry took a look at the third aspect of its mission---human connection. Our President & CEO, Paul W. Hamann, spoke about how human connection is at the root of the services we provide. Read his remarks below. The Night Ministry has cultivated a data-driven cultu...
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928 Hits

Lighting Up the Night 2019

On June 11, 2019, The Night Ministry held Lighting Up the Night, its Annual Awards Dinner & Auction, emceed by WTTW host and producer, Geoffrey Baer. Thanks to event sponsors and attendees, we raised nearly $500,000 in support of our mission to provide housing, health care, and human connection to our community members experiencing ho...
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1128 Hits

Kellogg Board Fellows Serve and Learn at The Night Ministry

dan Kellogg MBA candidate Dan Kish is finishing up his term as a Board Fellow on The Night Ministry's Board of Directors.
Every year, a select group of students from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management join the boards of Chicago-area nonprofits as ex-officio members, tackling strategic projects while gaining valuable experience in board governance. The Night Ministry has been one of those organizations for more than a decade, one of the reasons Kell...
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Physician Brings Decades of Hospital Experience to the Streets of Chicago

Ralph-min Dr. Ralph Ryan consults with a patient on a chilly Saturday while making the rounds with the Street Medicine Team. Photo by Lloyd DeGrane.
After 35 years as an interventional cardiologist in Michigan, Dr. Ralph Ryan is now practicing on the streets of Chicago. Ryan provides free health care to individuals who are experiencing homelessness, as a volunteer physician with The Night Ministry's Outreach and Health Ministry Program, most often on the Street Medicine Team. Being part of a te...
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1711 Hits

Phoenix Hall Expands Its Mission to Serve a Wider Base of Students and Their Families

phoenix-hall-min Residents prepare dinner at Phoenix Hall, The Night Ministry's housing program for high school students experiencing homelessness.
It's been a year of milestones at Phoenix Hall, capped off by six of the program's residents graduating from high school. Located in Chicago's West Lawndale neighborhood, Phoenix Hall is The Night Ministry's residence for high schoolers experiencing housing instability. It's named after the mascot of North Lawndale College Prep High School, which, ...
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1720 Hits

In My Own Words: For My Daughter - 04/18/2019

tiana-min For My Daughter - 04/18/2019
A poem by Tiana Johnson The world I wish to give to you. Though you are my world at the age of two. Growing and changing with phases of the sun. Seems that just yesterday you were only 1. Waking every morning with a smile that is true. I can only hope to be as patient as you. Forgiveness is in you, and love radiates from. For 777 days I have b...
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910 Hits

In My Own Words: Music Saved My Life

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By Daniel Barber Writing and performing music saved my life. When you're locked up, there's not much to do. I'd always loved poetry, so I spent my time reading, writing, and focusing on my vocabulary. Life doesn't always go your way, and to snap out of my depressive state, I had to put my thoughts into words on paper. Being homeless is tough. But I...
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1322 Hits

No Clear Path to Housing for Many Who Experience Homelessness

housin_20190503-191719_1 Individuals experiencing homelessness often face multiple hurdles as they pursue permanent housing.
The process of renting an apartment or buying a home can be difficult enough. But individuals experiencing homelessness face an array of challenges when trying to find stable housing. "There are some very common situations among the homeless population such as little or no income, a low credit score, an arrest record, or a history of evictions that...
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