Bethesda House has been offering BIBLICAL HOSPITALITY to the most vulnerable members of our community since 1992.
Hospitality Center services include:
- A Safe Haven
- Daily community meal
- Showers and laundry
- Mailboxes and storage lockers
- Phone/fax/copier/message center
- Clothing/Food Pantry
- Hygiene kits
- Household goods
- Referral and Information Services
What else does Bethesda House offer?
- Emergency/Crisis Assistance – assists homeless families and individuals navigate the complex system of care to receive emergency shelter placement and other basic needs as quickly as possible.
- Housing Case Management – assists guests to stabilize income and find the most suitable housing that is both safe and affordable. Includes renting from reputable landlords, applying for Section 8 Housing, Municipal Housing or other housing programs.
- Representative Payee Financial Management Program – manages SSI benefits for disabled guests particularly those with a history of chronic homelessness in spite of their steady monthly income. These folks are often easily victimized and lack the ability to make sound financial decisions. Bethesda House Case Managers work with each guest (50 currently in program) to establish a budget to ensure that rent, food, medical care and other basic needs are met prior to the guest being given a personal spending allowance. This program has ended the cycle of chronic homelessness for every participant who was homeless at the time of entry.
- Women’s Support Group – Facilitators include staff from Bethesda House, the Rape Crisis Center and the YWCA.
- The Lighthouse, a 10-bed permanent supportive housing program, provides safe and affordable housing for disabled adults with a history of chronic homelessness. Residents receive Case Management Services, Medication Management, and Life Skills support from staff that is on duty 24 hours a day 7 days a week. The Lighthouse practices the Housing-First model of permanent supportive housing, a proven best practice in assisting the chronically homeless to move into and remain in permanent housing.
- Liberty Apartment Program – Sixteen studio apartments for disabled adults with a history of chronic homelessness. This Housing-First permanent supportive rental program opened on January 25, 2010.
Who Are Our Guests?
Anyone who enters! However, Bethesda House’s role in the continuum of care provided by multiple local agencies is to reach out and care for the chronically homeless, disabled adults in our community. Many services are geared towards the unique needs of this group and focus on housing as the first step in the process rather than the end result. This “Housing-First” approach is a proven best practice for successfully assisting chronically homeless persons to leave the streets and regain their physical, emotional and spiritual well-being.
Families! Bethesda House assists many families and children through its Food Pantry, Community Meal and Clothing Room programs.
Bethesda House provides space on-site for a variety of partner agencies that have satellite programs at Bethesda House. Partners include: the AIDS Council of NENY; Schenectady County Health Dept.; Cornell Cooperative Extension; the YWCA and the Legal Aid Society of NENY.
Bethesda House participates in the Regional Homeless Management Information System, the Homeless Services Planning Board, the Schenectady County Ten-Year Plan to End Homelessness, the Evictions Task Force, the County Food Providers, the DSS Commissioner’s Advisory Board, the County Mental Health Sub-Committee, the Single Point of Access Committee and the Agency Chief Executives of Schenectady.