Street Outreach Van to Help the Homeless

Remember the 2019 polar vortex in Chicago? 23 degrees below zero, with a 50 below windchill factor.
Did you know that 1,260 Chicagoans were living on the streets at that time? And that number climbed to 1,454 in 2021.

They’re the unsheltered homeless. The most highly vulnerable and difficult to reach. Many homeless people live in shelters and encampments cropping up across our City.

In 2019, the City spent nearly $3.6 million to combat the considerable health and safety concerns for encampment residents.

Yet, research shows that long-term, the most humane, cost-effective strategy is to move people off the streets and into permanent supportive housing.

So, what’s going on?

In a nutshell, there are multiple barriers to the unsheltered homeless securing permanent housing:
justice system-involvement, substance use disorders, mental illness, trauma, and other complex factors.

As a result, they are ignored. Left to die alone with no access to health care.

That’s where we come in.

At Renaissance, we use a Housing First and Harm Reduction approach. Once our Street Outreach Team establishes rapport and builds trust with encampment residents, we take our unsheltered clients as they come, barriers and all. We first get them housed and then connect them with services.

But we want to do more.

And so we’ve added a Mobile Health Team to our outreach program. We want to bring on-site triage and mobile health services directly to the West and South Side shelters and encampments.

But we need a van we can retrofit to directly provide things like: health assessments, wound care, Covid-19 vaccinations, and Narcan for opioid overdoses.

And, we’ll transport those residents that want to see a doctor or mental health provider to a healthcare center or vaccination site.

In short, Renaissance wants to provide Street-to-Home care for the unsheltered homeless of Chicago. But we need a van to do it.

Now this is where you come in.

Please help us. No contribution is too small. As an added incentive, an anonymous donor will match your donation.

Thank you!


  • Anh Nguyen 
    • $50 
    • 12 d
  • Sandra Robinson 
    • $100 
    • 12 d
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Renaissance Social Services, Inc. 
Registered nonprofit
Donations are typically 100% tax deductible in the US.