Found House

FOUND HOUSE IHN MISSION:

To provide homeless families emergency shelter and hospitality through interfaith communities and to work with families to find and retain stable housing, with the goal of helping families secure safe, affordable, permanent housing. In 2022, Found House IHN:

  • Served 1,274 individuals from 377 families
  • Kept 150 beloved pets out of shelters
  • Helped approximately 88% of families served to obtain and maintain long-term housing

HOW IT WORKS:

Emergency shelter is provided through partnership between faith communities, which host four families for a week at a time in their houses of worship. These communities also provided meals and hospitality to guests in their building. Found House IHN provides transportation, daytime space and amenities, as well as comprehensive case management in support of a permanent housing plan. Together, this forms a community approach, providing not only shelter, but also recognition, acceptance and support to families struggling with a lack of affordable housing.

You are the most important part of this program! Be a part of this incredible, life-changing mitzvah!

Upcoming Hosting Weeks:
June 23-30, 2024
August 18-25, 2024

Wise Temple's Role

Wise Temple served as a founding partner congregation with Found House IHN in 1991, and has maintained its role supporting families facing housing insecurity by hosting families every year since. Wise Temple classrooms are transformed into cozy bedrooms, and the Program Room into a welcoming living room space, with volunteers welcoming, feeding, and creating community with Found House IHN guests who sleep at Wise Center for a week at a time. Without congregations like Wise Temple, it would be difficult for some families to stay together as they look for permanent housing and financial stability.

HOW YOU CAN HELP:

Wise Temple volunteers work together to provide food, fun, and a warm, comfortable, home-like environment for families during their stay in our building. This is a perfect opportunity for families and friends to spend meaningful time together helping others in our community. Scroll down to the “Volunteer Roles” section to learn more about how our volunteers support Found House IHN guests.

Questions? Contact Brooke Carlisi at bcarlisi@wisetemple.org

A PERSONAL LOOK

For over three decades, Wise Temple has hosted families experiencing temporary homelessness through Found House IHN. Yet, if you’ve never seen the program in action, it may be hard to understand this powerful mitzvah. These videos will help you understand how you can make a difference, will dispel any misconceptions, and will inspire you to participate.

What is Found House IHN

Learn about the Found House IHN mission from Found House Shelter Director, Eara Nixon, and some background on Wise Temple’s role with the organization from volunteer, Carol Kabel.

Found House IHN at Wise Temple

See the program in action at Wise Temple and hear from longtime volunteers and guests.

Volunteering for Found House IHN

Hear from Wise Temple volunteer, Steve Zimmerman, about his passion for the program with Found House IHN, and how easy and rewarding the experience can be for volunteers.

VOLUNTEER ROLES

Below are examples of roles that Wise Temple volunteers may fulfill when participating in the Found House IHN program. 

  • Setup: Prepare Wise Temple spaces for our guests, transforming classrooms into bedrooms and the Program Room into a living room space.
  • Evening Host: Serve as a primary host to both volunteers and guests each evening, ensuring everything runs smoothly, managing issues or concerns as they arise.
  • Bring & Serve Dinner: Purchase or prepare a meal. Sit with guests to share the meal and engage in friendly conversation.
  • Socialize & Play: Spend time with guests, enjoying a meal and friendly conversation. Games, puzzles and art supplies are provided for children, or you can bring your favorite game or activity to share. This is a great opportunity for children of all ages to volunteer, accompanied by an adult.
  • Overnight Host: Perhaps the easiest volunteer role, serve as the primary host to volunteers and guests during the night and early morning. Ensure everything runs smoothly and manage any issues or concerns as they arise. Set up breakfast for guests to enjoy in the morning and ensure that all guests are awake and ready to board the bus in the morning.
  • Laundry: Wash and dry bed linens, towels and blankets after the hosting week is complete. Volunteers can take items home, and return these items at their convenience. This role is shared among multiple volunteers.
  • Take Down: Restore Wise Temple spaces, resetting them for their primary use as Kehillah classrooms.