about us

St. Mary’s Franciscan Shelter provides temporary housing for families in Chester and Montgomery Counties. Our goal is to be the bridge from homelessness to stable living.

Our shelter works with a collaboration of local organizations and churches that refer families to us. Families are accepted on a non-discriminatory basis, must comply with the shelter rules and policies, and participate in all programs as defined in each family’s case management plan.

Our program has several components – Case Management, Education, Life skills training and temporary housing. The Case Manager works together with residents to develop a plan that will move them towards self sufficiency and stability. The education classes include Parenting, Finance, Faith and Nutrition – one topic per week. Each class is taught by a dedicated volunteer! Recently, we’ve added cooking, cleaning and healthy eating lessons that support living independently.

Each family’s length of stay varies. Families have their own bedroom and share communal dining, living rooms and bathrooms. All meals are provided. For 36 years, a hot dinner has been prepared by an amazing list of local churches and groups! We are very grateful for their generous support.

With the challenge of affordable housing in this area, St. Mary’s has recently built 4 transitional housing units to serve as the next step towards stability. These provide independent living with the continued support of case management and classes.

If you would like more information, please call us at 610-933-3097.

Our Mission

Guided by the Gospel and the spirits of Saints Francis and Clare of Assisi, we provide temporary shelter for homeless families. We create a community environment which fosters the dignity of each person, and we perpetually seek innovative ways to help families move toward independence.

Why We Serve

In America this year, nearly 2.5 million children and their parents will experience homelessness.

Homeless families account for more than 37% of the overall homeless population.

52% of children in homeless families are under the age of 5.

At St. Mary’s Franciscan Shelter, we serve families in our community who are experiencing homelessness, and we support them along their journey towards independence and stability, We believe that families should stay together, and we work to ensure that during these difficult times, they can do just that.