The House of Mercy is a 25-bed homeless center that provides homeless families throughout southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois with short-term emergency shelter and access to housing, job placement and child care resources. Staff at the Center assist the homeless in assessing their needs, obtaining appropriate referrals and services, and designing an action plan aimed at achieving more stable housing.
Why was the House of Mercy established?
In the mid-1990's, Mercy Health System president/CEO, Javon R. Bea, noticed that many families seeking treatment at Mercy's emergency department listed their family car as their address. He knew Mercy could do more than tend to their health care needs. After researching the level of homelessness in the area and finding a desperate need for emergency shelter, he developed a vision, which resulted in the opening and naming of the House of Mercy Homeless Center in August 1996.
Who supports the House of Mercy?
Volunteers give approximately 9,000 hours of service per year.
Lutheran Social Services facilitates a parenting group.
Childcare is available to residents through Community Kids Learning Center.
Donations from individuals and organizations provide ongoing support.
UW Extensions offers a cooking class once a month for residents to help develop their meal planning and preparation skills.
Is the House of Mercy accomplishing its objectives?
From August 1996 through December 2011, the House of Mercy provided shelter and support to over 4,987 individuals.
Over 50% of these individuals were children.
In 2011, 300 individuals stayed at the House of Mercy.
The Center is usually filled to capacity, with a waiting list.
How can I help?
Volunteer your time - 8 to 12 hours per month needed.
Call (608) 754-0045 for a "Wish List" of needed items.
Make a financial contribution, payable to: House of Mercy, 320 Lincoln Street, Janesville, WI 53548.
Invite us to your next gathering. House of Mercy staff will tell the "House of Mercy Story" to area service clubs, organizations and churches.