Families Moving Forward, a Minneapolis-based family homeless shelter, staved off closure this month after a precipitous drop in funding earlier in the year.
The faith-based non-profit announced last week that congregations, individuals, and foundations gave $100,000 in three months. The organization has since embarked on a sustainability campaign to raise $250,000.
"Unless we do some dramatic things, we're not going to be able to survive," executive director Leslie Frost said in an interview in mid-May. At the time, Frost said that the organization would have to close in July if they did not raise $60,000.
Families Moving Forward has assisted about 1,800 families since its inception in 1992. The agency serves eight families at a time in its emergency shelter program. Each month, over 300 individuals call to request help.
Since the organization is not a county-funded shelter, they can provide emergency housing for families from any county. Families Moving Forward also accepts same-sex couples and multi-generational families. These families are usually split up at other shelters.
The number of homeless families in the state has risen sharply in the past several years. Over 1,300 Minnesotan families were homeless during the last comprehensive shelter count conducted by the Wilder Foundation in 2006 - up 300 percent from 1991. The Minneapolis Public School District identified 5,500 homeless youth last year.
In early May, the Drake Hotel, a dilapidated building in downtown Minneapolis that gets used when all other family shelters are full, re-opened its doors.
"The truth is that there are almost no jobs," Frost said. "While we used to have some hope that a family could leave the shelter and find work, now it's getting much harder."