Information Resources for the Homeless
Homeless Shelters, Hope and Resilience


The word HOPE glowing and made out of a candle, paper clip, crayon, and rubber band.  Call 211 for social services.

Hope can be created out of a simple thought, feeling, or action. It cannot be taken from you since it resides in the soul. When nothing is left - there is still hope. Even if you feel there is no hope - you can create more with just a positive thought, or by calling a hotline for help.

Shelters | Womens Shelters | Assistance | Food | Health | Jobs | Utilities | Veterans | Research | Game of Life

The best way to find a shelter is to call 211 for information in your area. Check here to see if 211 is active in your state.


The idea of resilience is the ability to bounce back from setbacks using an empowered (and positive) mind set. Resilience is also considered to be the combination of mind, body, spirit, and social aspects. People usually have to find shelter and food before they can work on thriving. It can be a bit of a catch 22 though - since you need a healthy mind, body, spirit and peer support to be resilient enough to establish yourself. You have to start the game of life somewhere, and creating hope is a good place to begin. Please call 211 to find a shelter today.



Shelters are a combination of building resilience for the body, and also joining a social support system. If there is a place of worship - you can also combine spiritual as well.

Resources for the homeless - How to find shelter, food etc.

Homeless shelter directory - click on the state, and then scroll down all the way to click on the city. The links at the top are advertisements. - click on the state, and then scroll down to click on the city.

Transitional Housing

A directory of shelters by state from artists helping children

Find shelters and emergency help in your state from HUD.

Find homeless assistance through HUD.

Shelters that accept pets, more options

Red Cross Emegency Shelters

Womens shelters

Travellers aid- for transition assistance.

Affordable hotels: Youth hostels, further, information

HUD's Homeless Outreach Information Center: 1-800-483-1010

Evacuation and shelters for disasters

You can also find a place to volunteer or make a donation.

HUD's Homeless Outreach Information Center: 1.202.708.1112

HUD Community Connections 1.800.998.9999

HUD Housing Discrimination Hotline 1.800.669.9

Salvation army southeast states 404.728.1300777

The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function. One should, for example, be able to see that things are hopeless and yet be determined to make them otherwise.
-- F. Scott Fitzgerald.


Womens Shelters

Search for women's shelters by city and state.

Type the name of your city and state at the top of the page before the word "women's".  Do not delete any of the words already there. This is the quickest and best way I have found to search for a women's shelter in a particular area.

A directory of women's shelters - click on the state, and then scroll all the way down.

Shelters that accept pets, more options

If you are in immediate danger, call 911 right away.

Domestic Violence Hotline - 1.800.799.SAFE(7233)

Battered Women's Justice Project 1.800.903.0111

Health Resource Center on Domestic Violence 1.800.313.1310



The main resources for assistance for the homeless are:

Housing and Urban Development (HUD)


Medicaid and federal benefits resources for the homeless

Welfare Information Network

Social Security Claims

Find out if you are eligible for government benefits



Food creates resilience of the body and mind. Some foods help clean the body (garlic, rosemary and clove), and improve the mind.

There are usually food kitchens, food banks/pantries, and farmer's markets available locally. Food Assistance

Find food banks with Feeding America

Food Pantries




"Never talk defeat. Use words like hope, belief, faith, victory." - Norman Vincent Peale

Most jobs these days require that you apply online, and upload a resume. Most job websites have a link to a resume builder form that can create a resume for you. It's basically your name, contact information, and a list of previous jobs, volunteer work and education level. You can also include your strengths, and any experience, relevent training, or classes you have completed. If you don't have any previous work experience - most people usually make an organized list of strengths, skills, positive qualities, and volunteer work.

Tools to help the homeless find jobs

US Dept of Labor Veterans - find a job

Career Builder - Most jobs require that you apply online (upload a resume)

Job banks

"Hope is a state of mind, not of the world. Hope, in this deep and powerful sense, is not the same as joy that things are going well, or willingness to invest in enterprises that are obviously heading for success, but rather an ability to work for something because it is good."

Vaclav Havel




Resilience of the body and mind.

Health care for the homeless

You can search for sliding scale health care clinics. Generally speaking - they charge you according to your income. You should bring a pay stub/copy of your paycheck, or other proof of unemployment or income.

If you have been eating in a soup kitchen - it might be a good idea to ask your doctor if you should put clove in your coffee. Clove is traditionally thought to help stop the reproductive cycle of living things that might impair your thinking and digestion.

Other affordable kitchen herbs that may help with health problems are: garlic, rosemary, oregano, and thyme. Your doctor might be able to tell you whether you are experiencing die off symptoms after eating some of the above. If that is the case - you may temporarily feel ill while they are dying and ammonia and gases release. Please consult your physician before undergoing any health care treatments.


Spiritual Diversity

I have realized over time that it's difficult to acheive a resilient state without first balancing spiritually/energy/religion. Sometimes that's the whole problem to begin with, and the entire process is clogged until it is addressed. Visiting a local place of worship is an excellent way of creating hope. You can also attend services online or on TV.


Game of Life

(Download the Resilience Game of Life Excel Sheet)

The game of life is played by gaining points each time you accept the opportunity to help someone in need, do a good deed, or improve the world in some way. The goal of the game is to become a resilient person (and bounce back from adversity). You can earn points in the spirit category by helping as many people as possible each day. You should work on the body, mind, and social categories a little bit at a time as well. At the end of the game you should have all 4 categories of resilience covered (mind, body, spirit, social), and be better able to handle life's curve balls. You can check your total score if competing with friends. You can also look at the charts and graphs to see if you are covering all the resilience areas.


Utilities Assistance

Utilities and weather: Weatherization assistance, Weatherization assistance program, LIHEAP (help paying)



Pet-friendly hotels:

In general Motel 6 and LaQuinta will allow small pets.


Veterans and Military

Grief Counseling - Military

TAPS Hotline: 1 800-959-TAPS (8277)

For support of family members of deceased service persons. A source of "support once the official casualty case file is closed." This follow-up is best done by the private sector, by peers who have the empathy and understanding to help those facing a sudden loss. Includes links to other resources.


US Department of Veterans Affairs Benefits hotline 1 800-827-1000

GI bill, vocational rehabilitation, career and education counseling, disability, home loans, and life insurance etc.



Research on Homelessness

Information Resources For The Homeless Masters Paper

Related research: An overview of homelessness - Homelessness, Health, and Human Needs

Researchers have stated that the following topics are the categories of information needed to explore the resolution of homelessness: What to do first | Food | Identification cards | Shelters | Money | Jobs | Education | Veterans Information | Help for the homeless | Housing | Health | Disabilities | Substance abuse | Diversity among the homeless | Homeless Women | Released convicts | Transportation | Understanding the homeless | Libraries


National Coalition for the Homeless 

National Law Center on Homelessness and  Poverty 

National Health Care for the Homeless Council 

National Alliance to End Homelessness 

Department of Health and Human Services



Details on the information needs of the homeless:

I Finances
a/ Reauthorization of Temporary Aid to Needy Families (TANF)
b/ SSI Supplemental Support Income
c/ Public funding based on need
d/ Food Stamps
e/ Earned Income Credit


II Child care and relationships
a/ Diversity among the homeless
b/ Education


III Housing
a/ Low income and section 8 housing


IV Health
a/ Health mental and physical
b/ Substance abuse
c/ Disabilities
d/ Veterans


V Employment
a/ Jobs
b/ Job opportunities for those with disabilities


VI Education
a/ How to use the library
b/ GED
c/ Literacy
d/ Child education
e/ Understanding the homeless


VII Transportation
a/ Public Transportation
b/ Transportation for those with disabilities
c/ Travel information


VIII Public assistance
a/ Help for the homeless
b/ Food


IX Shelter
a/ Homeless Shelters
b/ Women and family homeless shelters


X Crime and safety
a/ Tips for street safety


XI Migration
a/ Resources for immigrants and transplants


XII Legal.
a/ Released convicts
b/ Identification cards

Hersberger, J. (1999). The homeless, public libraries and outreach services. North Carolina Libraries, 1999 (1), 8-12.


Research on ending homelessness in women

Women are a rising statistic among the homeless population. Many women become homeless due to domestic violence. This points to a link between an ineffective criminal response system and the onset of female homelessness. In a study of 24 formerly homeless women in NY it was found that their time in shelters "paled in comparison to the epic and tragic nature of these women's ongoing difficulties... in fact for some women, experiences of the shelter system provided temporary respite from the harsher reality they faced prior to and/or following their shelter stay." (Styron et al 2000). The common themes among the women were poverty, neglect, abuse, troubled interpersonal relationships and mental health concerns. (Styron et al 2000). Many people ask of abused women "why don't they leave?" The answer: "For some women, their escape means long durations of unacceptable living conditions or homelessness. According to shelter statistics, the wait for subsidized housing is anywhere from 3 weeks to 5 years (sic) despite the existence of a special priority for placement for victims of abuse." (Sev'er 2002) The fear of homelessness locks many women into abusive relationships.

Sev'er, Aysan. (2002). A Feminist Analysis of Flight of Abused Women, Plight of

Canadian Shelters: Another Road to Homelessness. Journal of Social Distress

and theHomeless, 11(4), 307-324.

Styron, Thomas, Ronnie Janoff-Bulman and Larry Davidson. (2000). 'Please

Ask Me How I am': Experiences of Family Homelessness in the Context of

Single Mothers Lives. Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless, 9(2), 143-165.



Evacuation and shelters for disasters


If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost:
that is where they should be. Now, put foundations under them.
-- Henry David Thoreau Walden


About Information Resources for the Homeless

The Information Resources for the Homeless website was created and designed by the researcher to satisfy the information needs of the homeless, homeless advocates and librarians. This evaluation project aims to determine which online resources are most helpful – and most hope-inspiring -- in empowering the homeless. The resource site was created for this study to make lifelong learning possible for the homeless. A review of the literature on library services to the homeless from the perspective of the homeless patron and of the librarian is included. The causes of homelessness, sources of hope and diversity, getting the homeless off the streets, the homeless and the internet, and communication with the homeless are all important issues that can be addressed by library resources.



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Information Resources for the Homeless: Homeless Shelters, Hope, and Resilience | About | Last updated 10-30-2019