SBJ PHOTO BY MCKENZIE ROBINSON. Rex Hansen, Board Of Trustees President And Meleah Spencer, CEO

2020 Charitable Nonprofit of the Year

Last Thursday, The Kitchen, Inc. was recognized as the Charitable Nonprofit of the Year at Springfield Business Journal’s 2020 Economic Impact Awards.

Housing is the Key

For 37 years, we have provided services to homeless individuals and families in Springfield and the surrounding communities. As our community of nonprofits grew, we adapted our services and focused on what we do best: housing. Helping people get back into permanent housing is the first step towards long-term stability. Once housed, our case managers work with clients to overcome the barriers that led to their homelessness and create plans for them to remain stably housed. 

No One Face of Homelessness

There is no single face of homelessness, and we’ve developed programs to make sure homelessness is rare, brief and nonrecurring for each of our clients.

  • Rare Breed Youth Services focuses on the needs of at-risk and homeless youth ages 13-24 years old.
  • Home at Last, funded through the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) grant from the Department of Veterans Affairs, serves Veterans who are homeless or at-risk of experiencing homelessness.
  •  The Community Housing program works with local landlords to provide housing opportunities for families, individuals, youth, and seniors experiencing homelessness.
  • The Emergency Shelter provides a safe place for individuals and families to stay before they can move into permanent housing. 

Safe. Affordable. Desirable.

Everyone wants to live in a home that is safe, affordable, and desirable. As highlighted in the 2019 Community Focus Report, “The availability of safe, high-quality and affordable housing remains a concern…Affordability is what keeps housing out of reach for low-income families.” We help meet this need by providing 222 affordable housing units through our housing developments: Franciscan Villa, Beacon Village, McClernon Villas, and Spero Place.

A Community Without Homelessness

Our vision is “a community without homelessness.” Maintaining our focus has been possible thanks to community support, collaboration with community organizations that share our vision, dedicated teamwork among staff, and creative and flexible thinking to successfully maneuver the obstacles that arise to help people exit homelessness. 

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