Metropolitan House is a small, night shelter for homeless men operated during the winter months (October to April) as a ministry of Metropolitan Memorial United Methodist Church. It provides a safe, supportive environment for homeless individuals as they take the first step on the ladder that leads out of homelessness, while engaging congregants and community members in direct and personal service with their unhoused neighbors.
Since opening in 1992, Metropolitan House has served hundreds of homeless individuals. It houses a maximum of four residents at a time with all residents coming to Metropolitan House on referral from the Community Council for the Homeless at Friendship Place, which provides ongoing case-management services to the residents.
Metropolitan House runs on volunteer power! Over the years, hundreds of members of Metropolitan Church and the broader community have served as overnight volunteers, donated meals and supplies, contributed financially, and provided leadership. Metropolitan House volunteers gain the satisfaction of doing something immediate and tangible to help someone in need while building relationships with persons whose circumstances may be very different from their own. One of the common reactions of volunteers is to say, “Working at Metropolitan House shattered all my misconceptions about homelessness!”
- Serve as an Overnight Volunteer. Volunteers from the church and community supervise the shelter on Friday and Saturday nights. Working in pairs, and sleeping in separate, secure quarters, volunteers serve from 6:30p.m. until 7:00a.m. To learn more about serving as a volunteer, or to receive email notification about volunteer dates, contact Volunteer Coordinator Nancy Clarkson.
- Donate Meals. The evening meal served each night at Metropolitan House is donated by a church or community member. Prepared meals may be delivered ahead of time, ready-to-be-served or frozen, or brought to the shelter at the time it is to be served. To learn more about donating meals to Metropolitan House contact Meal Coordinator Kent Weaver or sign up online to donate a meal.
- Be a leader. A volunteer board of directors manages the operation of Metropolitan House, coordinating volunteers and staff, maintaining the shelter space, communications, raising funds, and attending to the intake and outplacement of residents. To learn more about leadership opportunities related to Metropolitan House, contact Metropolitan House Board Chair, Dick Schleicher.
Shelter volunteers and meal donors can view available dates and sign up online at Metropolitan Memorial Cooperative Parish—Serve Now!, a volunteer scheduling website used to coordinate these and other Metropolitan Memorial service opportunities.