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Our Stories

News and insights from The Night Ministry community.

Street Medicine Teams up with Skilled Assessor to Move Clients into Permanent Housing

Skilled-Assesor Ryan Spangler of Heartland Alliance and The Night Ministry’s Sylvia Hibbard work together to move chronically homeless adults into housing.
More adults who have experienced chronic unsheltered homelessness are finding housing because of a partnership between The Night Ministry and the nonprofit Heartland Alliance. Ryan Spangler, a Senior Outreach Worker and Case Manager at Heartland Alliance, is what is known as a Skilled Assessor for the Homeless Management Information System (HM...
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17 Hits

The Night Ministry in 2021: A Q/A with President & CEO, Paul W. Hamann

Screen-Shot-2021-01-12-at-2.56.43-PM Scroll down to watch the conversation.
What's new and on the horizon at The Night Ministry? Our President & CEO, Paul W. Hamann, sat down with Nieal Marie Ross, Manager of Youth Supportive Services, to talk about new programs and initiatives at the agency in 2021. 
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60 Hits

First Virtual Night Lights a Success

Night-Lights Night Lights, the Annual Gala of The Night Ministry's Associate Board, went online this year.
By Alyssa Cullinan, Night Lights Chair It goes without saying that 2020 was a remarkable year; and like most everyone else,The Night Ministry's Associate Board was required to adapt in new ways. Our full calendar of service, advocacy, and fundraising events was truncated, and meetings moved online. The human connection we've all expe...
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44 Hits

The Night Ministry Expands the Scale and Scope of Outreach on Public Transit

IMG_4038 An individual receives a sack supper from Kyanna Johnson, Public Ally at The Night Ministry, at a CTA Blue Line station.
Overall ridership is down because of the pandemic, but for some members of the community, public transit offers more than just a way to commute. Many people experiencing homelessness ride trains and buses for shelter and safety. That is why The Night Ministry is now offering health care and outreach services at two CTA train stations two nights a w...
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263 Hits

COVID-19 Creates Barriers for Securing IDs and Benefits

ID-Document-min-copy First-time applicants for an Illinois State ID Card must present several documents to prove their identity.
An ID card is required to obtain housing, employment, or benefits such as Medicaid. But many individuals experiencing homelessness don't have an ID, and now the coronavirus is making it harder to get one. For months, the Illinois Secretary of State facility in downtown Chicago, where individuals can apply for a first-time or replacement state ID ca...
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177 Hits

New Schedule for the Health Outreach Bus in 2021

IMG_1840-min The Health Outreach Bus is adjusting its schedule beginning January 1, 2021, to better serve Chicagoans experiencing homelessness or poverty.
To better serve Chicagoans experiencing homelessness or poverty, we are modifying the Health Outreach Bus schedule beginning January 1, 2021. After a trial period serving Chicago's Rogers Park neighborhood, we have determined that there are other areas of the city where our services are more critically needed at this time. Two of those areas are&nb...
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334 Hits

Masks Without Borders Provides Face Masks for The Night Ministry’s Clients

masks The face masks donated by Masks Without Borders to The Night Ministry are handmade by women receiving on-the-job training and a livable wage in Delhi, India.
Mask-wearing continues to be an essential tool in preventing the spread of the coronavirus. That's why The Night Ministry provides face masks to the individuals experiencing homelessness and poverty it serves through its Youth Housing Programs and Outreach & Health Ministry Programs, who are most likely unable to procure masks on their own. Our...
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593 Hits

The Night Ministry Adapts Holiday Celebrations During the Pandemic

IMG_3812 The Night Ministry will distribute 900 holiday stockings to the individuals it serves through its Health Outreach Program and Youth Programs this year, because of the generosity of its donors.
The coronavirus is making this a holiday season like no other, with so many of us adjusting our plans in order to protect the health and safety of our loved ones and those around us. At The Night Ministry, we are also adapting our annual holiday celebrations to align with recommended COVID-19 procedures, while still sharing the magic of the season ...
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790 Hits

ER Doc Brings Medical Experience to Board of Directors

claudia-min Dr. Claudia Beals, a board-certified emergency room physician, joined The Night Ministry's Board of Directors in 2020.
As an emergency room physician, Dr. Claudia Beals has firsthand knowledge of the intersection between homelessness and the health care system. Dr. Beals, who joined The Night Ministry's Board of Directors this year, trained in emergency medicine in the South Bronx, where she encountered individuals experiencing homelessness who came into the hospit...
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600 Hits

Flexible Housing Program Aims to Stabilize Homeless Youth in the Community

Brooke Brooke Thomas, Housing Case Manager at The Night Ministry, provides support to young people participating in the Flexible Housing Pool, helping them stabilize in their apartments.
Young adults struggling with homelessness in Chicago now have more permanent housing options available to them, under a new partnership involving The Night Ministry and several other local agencies. The Flexible Housing Pool for Youth provides subsidies for market-rate rental apartments across the city, along with case management services, to help ...
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699 Hits

Getting Real with Harm Reduction

Harm-reduction Scroll down to watch the replay of our conversation about harm reduction
Harm reduction is an evidence-based public health model designed to reduce the adverse effects of potentially risky behaviors such as drug use and sexual activity. Noam Greene and Andrew Wojda of The Night Ministry's Street Medicine Team discussed how The Night Ministry utilizes harm reduction to save lives and October 29.
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870 Hits

Partnership with UI Health Brings Substance Abuse Treatment to the Streets

Screen-Shot-2020-11-13-at-6.02.29-PM Individuals can use a mobile phone to access appointments with UI Health doctors for substance abuse treatment.
As opioid-related overdoses and deaths increase by alarming rates in Chicago this year, The Night Ministry has partnered with the University of Illinois (UI) to expand access to substance abuse treatment among Chicago's homeless population. Through an innovative telemedicine program, the Street Medicine Team is connecting individuals it serves on C...
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1084 Hits

Coronavirus Impacts Supply of Essential Hygiene Items

IMG_3481 Resource Coordinator, Miranda Dean, holds up a hygiene kit that will be distributed to a client of The Night Ministry. The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a decrease in some essential hygiene items.
Every year, The Night Ministry distributes thousands of hygiene kits to the individuals it serves on the streets of Chicago. The kits are filled with travel- or sample-size toiletry items such as deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, and soap to help clients maintain their personal hygiene, and the agency relies on the generosity of its supporters to pr...
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1665 Hits

The Night Ministry Opposes Change to Shelter Equal Access Rule

hud-for-blog-2 The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is seeking to remove protections for transgender individuals seeking services at homeless shelters.
On July 1, 2020, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced a rule that would modify the Equal Access Rule, stripping transgender people of fundamental protections that ensure the safety of anyone in need of HUD-funded programs. The proposed rule would allow local shelter providers decision-making authority around a transg...
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1198 Hits

Barbara Bolsen Looks Back on Two Decades with The Night Ministry

bar_20200915-204445_1 Barbara Bolsen, The Night Ministry's Vice President of Strategic Partnerships and Community Engagement, is retiring after more than 20 years at the agency.
This month, The Night Ministry says goodbye to a beloved and long-serving leader and colleague. After more than two decades at the agency, Barbara Bolsen, our Vice President of Strategic Partnerships and Community Engagement, is retiring. Bolsen leaves behind a legacy of service, compassion, and innovation at The Night Ministry, all aimed toward th...
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1612 Hits

Advocacy Alert: Emergency Housing Resources

advocacy-alert-for-web
The U.S. Senate is back in Washington this week with plans to move on a COVID-19 spending package by the end of July. Last month, the House of Representatives prioritized emergency protection for renters and homeowners in both the CARES Act and the Emergency Rental Assistance and Rental Market Stabilization Act. Across our country, Betwee...
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902 Hits

The Crib Overnight Shelter Has a New Home

michelle-tour Michelle Thomas, Youth Outreach Case Manager (left), shows guests of The Crib the dorm room at the shelter's new home.
Nine years after it began operations in the basement of Lakeview Lutheran Church, The Night Ministry's overnight shelter for young adults has reopened in a larger, enhanced space on the first floor of The Night Ministry's new headquarters in Bucktown. Guests of The Crib woke up at the old location for the last time Monday morning and were then welc...
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2395 Hits

Youth 4 Truth Elevates Youth Voices at The Night Ministry and Beyond

youth Members of the most recent Youth 4 Truth cohort devoted discussions to food insecurity and the importance of elections. (Photo taken pre-COVID19 pandemic).
Youth Development Specialist Candace Musick and Youth Outreach Team Case Manager Michelle Thomas have run Youth 4 Truth, The Night Ministry's leadership development program for young people served by the agency, for the past few years. But lately they've been able to step back as program participants have taken charge.  "There used to be a lot...
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998 Hits

Looking Forward with Hope: A Fiscal New Year's Reflection from The Night Ministry's President & CEO

paul Paul W. Hamann is The Night Ministry's President & CEO.
Dear Friends, The end of the year is always a reflective time for me. It is one of my traditions to take December 31 as my last personal day of the year, so I can spend time in reflection, as the holidays come to a close. I find a quiet space within my heart to reflect on the challenges of the year that is passing, what have been my personal and pr...
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1203 Hits

The Night Ministry Is a Good Neighbor in the Communities It Serves

jenny The Night Ministry's Community Engagement Manager, Jenny Merritt (right), speaks with Tracie Worthy, Vice President of I AM ABLE Center for Family Development, during a meeting of TR4IM.
Human connection is an essential part of The Night Ministry's mission. And while it's often spoken about in terms of how the agency works with those whom it serves, it extends to communities as well. That means building and sustaining relationships with residents, businesses, and leaders in the neighborhoods in which it operates. Over the past few ...
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987 Hits

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