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13 Homeless Charities You Can Support Today

It’s hard to accept, but most of us are just one tragedy away from losing everything. Homeless Americans’ stories are incredibly varied: no two are alike, and there’s most certainly at least one story you can relate to. 

The thing about homelessness that many people don’t grasp is that it’s incredibly hard to escape: for example, even if you’re in line for a job that could help you get back on your feet, employers often won’t hire someone who can’t provide a valid home address.

But there are nonprofits at work that are helping to both prevent homelessness, and help people escape it.

Check out these 13 homeless charities and organizations that need your donations today.

13 Charities Helping The Homeless

1. Catholic Charities USA

Catholic Charities USA help homelessness

Catholic Charities USA provides aid to some of the most vulnerable and aims to reduce overall poverty nationwide. This organization’s mission revolves around social justice and goodwill. Did you know more than 500,000 people in the United States experience homelessness on a nightly basis, and more than one-third of those are children? Catholic Charities USA has more than 35,000 affordable housing units across the country, but that number can be even greater with your help.

For donors who care about:

  • Affordable Housing
  • Immigration and refugee services
  • Integrated health
  • Social enterprise initiatives, advocacy, and policy
  • Disaster relief
  • Family foundational services
  • Food and nutrition

How to Support Catholic Charities USA:

2. Community Housing Partnership

Community Housing Partnership stabilize lives in SF

Community Housing Partnership works to stabilize lives in the San Francisco Bay Area by providing housing and helping residents become self-sufficient. This partnership celebrated its thirtieth anniversary in 2020 with more than 1,900 success stories! In 2019 alone, the organization helped 600 people find stable employment. Community Housing Partnership continues to counsel, lead volunteer efforts, and advocate for better policies in an area where those suffering are too often overlooked.  

For those who care about:

  • Housing and employment initiatives
  • Community engagement, organizing, and advocacy
  • Promoting housing choices

How to Support Community Housing Partnership:

3. ShelterBox USA

Emergency disaster relief ShelterBox USA

ShelterBox USA started small in the United Kingdom in 2000, and it has now expanded to helping the remotely vulnerable stay sheltered all over the world, even in the most hard-to-reach corners. In just twenty years, ShelterBox has provided aid to 1.5 million people in more than 100 countries! The organization goes the distance to deliver ShelterBoxes and ShelterKits to those impacted by natural disasters and conflicts. Inside each delivery, victims will find family-sized tents for temporary shelter and essential tools and materials to start building a new foundation. 

For donors who care about:

  • Rebuilding communities
  • Natural disasters
  • Conflict and crisis relief
  • Providing immediate shelter and safety
  • Providing care items

How to Support ShelterBox USA

4. Los Angeles House of Ruth

Homeless Women and Children Los Angeles House of Ruth

Los Angeles House of Ruth provides safe spaces to homeless women and children, who are often fleeing domestic or workplace abuse. LAHR started with just four beds in 1978, and it now serves more than 180 people each year by providing access to 80 beds in four different transitional houses. During their stays, victims are offered the help they need to become self-sufficient in their communities.

For donors who care about:

  • Domestic abuse victims
  • Women and children services
  • Workplace abuse victims
  • Shelter and housing
  • Trauma aftercare services

How to Support Los Angeles House of Ruth

5.  Covenant House New York

Covenant House New York largest provider for homelessness

Covenant House New York is leading the effort in fighting youth homelessness in New York City. This nonprofit provides more than a place for young people to sleep; It helps them to create and advance their educational and career goals, provides access to a health and wellness center to serve young peoples’ medical needs, dedicates shelter and other services to save youth from human trafficking, and partners with other organizations to ensure LGBTQ youth needs are met.

For donors who care about:

  • Displaced and homeless youth
  • Human trafficking
  • Education and employment for youth
  • LGBTQ advocacy and services

How to Support Covenant House New York:

6. The Ali Forney Center

The Ali Forney Center protests LGBTQ youth

The Ali Forney Center protects LGBTQ youth by housing and providing services which help them prepare for independent living off the streets. The organization was founded in memory of Ali Forney, a gender-nonconforming teen, who fled to the streets after New York City’s foster system failed him. Forney was murdered in Harlem in 1997, and AFC’s goal is to ensure no teen suffers a similar fate. The AFC operates a 24-hour Drop-In Center, which provides services to almost 1,400 homeless LGBTQ youth from around the country every year. 

For donors who care about:

  • Helping LGBTQ homeless youth
  • Youth HIV/STI prevention
  • Peer-to-peer education
  • Job readiness and education
  • Providing free medical services

How to Support the Ali Forney Center:

7. PATH (People Assisting the Homeless)

People Assisting the Homeless for eradicating homelessness

PATH provides permanent housing to those in need before focusing on building stability in their lives through voluntary services. What started as a group of just sixty people in 1983, PATH has now impacted more than 140 different communities. In the past seven years alone, it has found permanent homes for more than 9,000 people. PATH’s main focus is to end homelessness once and for all.

For donors who care about:

  • Eradicating Homelessness
  • Changing Whole Communities
  • Permanent, Stable Housing
  • Medical and Mental Healthcare
  • Advocating for Benefits
  • Employment Training

How to Support PATH

8. National Alliance to End Homelessness

National Alliance to End Homelessness homepage

The National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH) is a Washington, DC-based nonpartisan nonprofit organization committed to preventing and ending homelessness. The Alliance was founded in 1983 by a group of concerned citizens striving to meet the emergency needs of a then-growing population of homeless people nationwide. The NAEH now leads the nation in federal homelessness policy, supplying data and research to elected officials and policymakers to advance congressional support and legislation that funds critical homeless assistance programs. The Alliance’s remote and onsite training also helps communities turn policy solutions and proven best practices into sustainable, on-the-ground programs.

For donors who care about:

  • Veterans outreach
  • COVID-19 crisis response
  • Housing-focused emergency shelters
  • Federal homelessness policy and legislation

How to Support the National Alliance to End Homelessness

9. Coalition for the Homeless

Coalition for the Homeless homepage

The Coalition for the Homeless is the nation’s oldest advocacy and direct service organization helping homeless men, women and children, and other at-risk populations. Since its inception in 1981, the Coalition provides affordable housing, adequate food, and employment opportunities to the homeless in New York City through 11 frontline programs. Every day, the Coalition helps more than 3,500 individuals survive immediate crises and work toward long-term stability.

For donors who care about:

  • Disability rights
  • Crisis intervention
  • Eviction prevention
  • Job training for women
  • Advocacy and impact litigation

How to Support the Coalition for the Homeless

10. National Homelessness Law Center

National Homelessness Law Center homepage

The National Homelessness Law Center (NHLC) is a nonprofit based in Washington, D.C., and the only national organization dedicated to ending and preventing homelessness through the power of the law. The NHLC fights at the federal, state, and local levels to protect the rights of people experiencing homelessness, including homeless students’ right to education and the First Amendment-protected right to ask for help, which led to the repeal and end of enforcement on panhandling bans in nearly 60 cities. In addition, the NHLC operates programs to provide housing, food, healthcare, and education to homeless families, children, and individuals.

For donors who care about:

  • Domestic violence
  • Decriminalizing homelessness
  • Building homeless shelters
  • Fighting unlawful evictions
  • Youth and education rights

How to Support the National Homelessness Law Center

11. StreetWise

StreetWise homepage

StreetWise provides a “hand up, not a hand out” by helping homeless individuals to earn immediate income and work toward becoming self-sufficient with dignity. Founder, Judd Lofchie, created the Chicago-based StreetWise Magazine, a street paper providing both a voice and employment opportunities for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness in 1992. The StreetWise Transition to Employment Program (S.T.E.P.) provides participants with soft skills training and ongoing support services and has an over 90% job retention rate. The program’s impact (to date): more than 500 empowered to work plus over 180,000 magazines sold yearly.

For donors who care about:

  • Community outreach
  • Substance abuse
  • Immediate employment
  • Post-incarceration workforce reentry
  • Mental health and social services

How to Support StreetWise

12. Bay Area Rescue Mission

Bay Area Rescue Mission homepage

The Bay Area Rescue Mission (BARM) provides round-the-clock support to feed, shelter, clothe and care for the Bay Area’s homeless men, women, and children. BARM serves the community through faith-based discipleship programs that focus on long-term recovery. In addition, it provides emergency services and transitional housing, plus has a food pantry and distribution center. In 1999, BARM started offering training and a degree program for a career in the foodservice industry through its Culinary Arts Training Center. In late 2021, construction finishes for BARM’s Bridge of Hope Center, helping bridge the gap for homeless women and children.

For donors who care about:

  • Faith-based outreach
  • Job and life skills training
  • Youth outreach programs
  • Women and children services
  • Family reconciliation

How to Support the Bay Area Rescue Mission

13. Tipping Point Community

Tipping Point Community homepage

Tipping Point Community fights poverty in the San Francisco Bay Area by identifying and investing in the best nonprofits to provide housing, early childhood, education, and employment to the over 1 million individuals and families in the region who lack the resources to meet their basic needs. Tipping Point also works with the government and local business leaders to improve public policies and systems, plus create community solutions that provide more life-changing services to the Bay Area. Since 2005, Tipping Point has invested nearly $300 million in unrestricted funding to support the fight against poverty; and last year, it helped more than 500,000 Bay Area residents improve their quality of life.

For donors who care about:

  • Public policy change
  • Community engagement
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Breaking the cycle of poverty
  • Adult education and career services

How to Support the Tipping Point Community

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