Our Stories

News and insights from The Night Ministry community.

Our Mission Will Not Change

The Night Ministry's STEPS Transitional Living Program continues to provide safe, supportive shelter for young adults experiencing homelessness and their children during the COVID-19 pandemic.

A letter from Paul W. Hamann, President & CEO of The Night Ministry March 23, 2020 Dear Friends, The order for all Illinois residents to stay at home is in effect, but The Night Ministry, with your support, continues to provide essential services to young people and adults experiencing homelessness or poverty in Chicago. Last Wednesday morning,...

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Fulfilling Our Mission during the COVID-19 Pandemic

The Night Ministry's Health Outreach Bus continues to visit underserved neighborhoods in Chicago six days a week..

​A letter from Paul W. Hamann, President & CEO of The Night Ministry (Please note some conditions have changed since this letter was originally published) March 16, 2020 Dear Friends, On behalf of the thousands whom The Night Ministry serves, thank you for your support of our mission to provide housing, health care, and human connection to...

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Advocacy Alert: COVID-19 Emergency Federal Funding

Did you know that The Night Ministry's Health Outreach Bus and Street Medicine Program do not qualify for the COVID-19 emergency funding passed by Congress? That's because the funds are limited to "Federally Qualified Health Centers" (FQHC's) and our programs operate as "Free and Charitable Clinics," which the Federal government does not consider a...

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Before the Bus Hits the Road

Watch the video below to learn what it takes to get the Health Outreach Bus ready to hit the road. It's more than just jumping on board and starting the ignition. 

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Chicago's 100-Day Challenge of Youth Homelessness

The 100-Day Challenge on Youth Homelessness is focused on innovative ways to end homelessness among young adults in Chicago.

We are nearing the end of the 100-Day Challenge on Youth Homelessness in Chicago, a push to stably house 225 individuals ages 17 to 24 who are experiencing homelessness. According to Chicago's Dashboard to End Homelessness, at any given time, there are approximately 1,500 young adults ages 18 to 24 on the city's list for transitional living program...

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Budget Process Is Focused on Needs of Clients and Rooted in Strategy

Growth in The Night Ministry yearly budget has been in line with the agency’s strategic goals and focused on better meeting the needs of clients served through programs such as the Health Outreach Bus.

How is the yearly budget for an organization with multiple programs serving more than 6,000 individuals per year formulated? "We empower our department directors and program managers to drive the budget process, as they know firsthand what the needs of The Night Ministry's clients and staff are," said Erin Ryan, Senior Vice President. Directors and...

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Street Medicine Widens Its Impact with More Staff and New Vehicle

The new Street Medicine Van is customized to allow team members to better serve their clients.

What started as a pilot project with a few members of The Night Ministry staff visiting encampments a once a week has blossomed into a robust outreach program making deep inroads into Chicago's homeless population. With the addition of three new full-time staff members, the Street Medicine Program is now on the road six to seven days a week, usuall...

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What Is Home?

This holiday season, The Night Ministry is asking members of its community what home means to them.

"Home for the holidays" is a phrase heard often this time of year. But what does "home" mean for individuals who have experienced homelessness? Teresa, who recently found permanent housing with the help of The Night Ministry's Street Medicine Team, said home means stability. "It's a place where I can get myself together. I can look for a job now. I...

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Holiday Celebrations Provide Both Cheer and Essentials to The Night Ministry’s Clients

The Night Ministry is celebrating the holidays with the individuals and families whom we serve.

Every year, with the support of so many of its friends, The Night Ministry holds holiday celebrations for the individuals and families served through all of its programs. A major part of the celebrations are the over 1,200 holiday stockings that are being distributed this week during celebrations at the Health Outreach Bus and by the Street Medicin...

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Board Chair Alicia Pond Values Devotion of The Night Ministry’s Board and Staff

Alicia Pond joined The Night Ministry’s Board of Directors in 2008.

For Alicia Pond, Chair of The Night Ministry's Board of Directors, being a Chicagoan involves taking an active role in making the city a better place. "Your community can be your neighborhood, but your community is also the larger city. And being a member of the community means caring for one another," she said. We spoke with Pond as she winds down...

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In My Own Words: Felons or Humans?

Individuals who have spent time in prison or jail face many obstacles in obtaining stable housing upon release.

According to the Prison Policy Initiative, individuals who have been incarcerated are ten times more likely to experience homelessness than the general public. The following essay is by Richard B., a member of Youth 4 Truth, The Night Ministry's leadership and advocacy group for young adults. Richard experienced homelessness after he was released f...

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Housing Instability and Inadequacy Common among Health Outreach Bus Clients

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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Latest 1735 Construction Photos

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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The Night Ministry Transitions out of Its Ravenswood Headquarters

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

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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The Associate Board Rededicates to Service and Partnership Building

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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Criminalization Perpetuates the Cycle of Homelessness

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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Street Medicine: A New Frontier in Homeless Outreach Services

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

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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1735 North Ashland Avenue, Suite 2000, Chicago, IL 60622 | 773-784-9000
The Night Ministry is a 501(c)3 charitable organization. Our Federal Tax ID (EIN) is 36-3145764.