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Emergency Shelter

Our rotational shelter program and warm hospitality is the foundation of the Family Promise model.

Working with community resources, Family Promise Affiliates provide comprehensive and targeted services, including extensive case management, at 1/3 the cost of traditional shelter. Furthermore, Family Promise Affiliates serve families of all compositions, often providing their only shelter option in a community. ​​​FPCA is Mobile’s only emergency housing program that provides shelter and services for the entire family at no cost to them.

And it works.


The resources are already there. In the community, there are congregations and organizations that can provide space in their buildings to serve as temporary homes. Day Centers, where families can take showers, receive case management, and look for housing and jobs, can be located at a house of worship or agency. There is transportation to get families from the host shelters to the Day Center and back. With volunteers giving their time, making meals, and sharing hospitality, family homelessness is addressed without the creation of expensive shelters. Across the country, people have realized that this innovative approach truly makes a difference for families experiencing homelessness—and more than 200,000 volunteers.

These volunteers are the core of the program. They share food, spend the night, play with children and lend their passion and expertise to help families get back on their feet. They prove that motivated people can solve family homelessness. And, in the process, they truly create “home” – and a community – for families who have no place left to turn.


In every community, these core elements exist. By bringing the community together on the issue of family homelessness, Family Promise addresses a major social problem in a holistic, effective way. Once the community becomes engaged, people understand the root causes of family homelessness and take steps to address them. Family Promise Affiliates have created more than 1,700 community initiatives—housing programs, homelessness prevention, childcare and much more—that target the issues of poverty and homelessness on a local level.


Not only does our 85% success rate mean many more families stably housed, it is also a tremendous cost saving to the community as diversion from far more expensive interventions. Our approach of keeping families together, identifying their strengths, and partnering with the community for solutions means that families are at much lower risk of returning to homelessness.


Families enter the program with an initial 30-day stay in mind.

  • Families use the Day Center, which offers laundry and shower facilities, as their home base and permanent address while in the program.

  • Families stay overnight at host congregations where volunteers provide all meals and transportation to and from the Day Center. 

  • Families who don't have their own transportation are transported to and from the Day Center and host congregation in the FPCA van.

  • Host congregations commit to hosting 4 families every night for seven nights, at least once per quarter.

  • Volunteers provide all meals.

  • With all basic needs provided free of charge, families concentrate on meeting the goals set out in their case management plan, including seeking employment, saving, and securing permanent housing.

Who we serve:
Families who have lost, or are at risk of losing, their current housing, including families living in hotels or with family or friends.

  • Single-parent, dual-parent, and multi-generational families accepted.

  • Must be 21 years or older and have at least one dependent child under the age of 18.

  • Must be capable of performing activities of daily living independently.

  • Must be drug and alcohol free with no serious criminal record.


Families must commit to:

  • Seeking employment and housing on a daily basis.

  • Meeting regularly with a case manager and completing a case management plan.

  • Remaining drug and alcohol free while in the program.

No religious affiliation necessary.

How to get connected:
Step 1: Call 251-441-1991 and complete a phone assessment. (~15 min)
Step 2: If requested, complete an in-person interview with all adult household members present.

(~1 hour)
Step 3: Submit to a background check and drug screening.
Step 4: Acknowledge, sign, and abide by all guest guidelines.


Read more about our data management and privacy practices.  

"IHN is the quintessential community approach to homelessness.  The result is a real solution that is cost-effective and compassionate."

-Diane McCaskey, Executive Director

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