Interfaith Hospitality (PIHN)

Our Guests

Each year, typically in the spring, Saint Paul’s hosts three or four homeless families in the church building for a month. Our guest families are all part of a program run by Philadelphia Interfaith Hospitality Network (PIHN) that helps to transition homeless families into safe, stable housing and full-time employment for adults.

The organization provides childcare, job skills training, needed supplies, and a community environment for struggling families, and arranges for a network of diverse faith communities to host the families while long-term housing is being arranged for them.

Would you like to help change lives?  Volunteer to help this year’s guests.

Our Impact

Saint Paul’s has been proudly serving as an IHN host site and parishioners have worked as volunteer hosts for many years now, and the month in which the families stay with us has become a central part of our community calendar. Each year, our wonderful volunteers step up and donate their time to help these families feel welcome and at ease during the first week that our guests are staying with us. Over just a single week, our volunteers typically put in over 100 hours of work helping the families, and we could not run this program so successfully without their support!

Volunteers

At each church host location, parishioners and other community volunteers contribute their time to serve as nightly “Dinner Hosts” who eat meals with the families, “Storytellers” who help to entertain and watch out for the children, and “Overnight Hosts” who stay in the church for the night. While families are staying in each church, other area churches that do not have the space to house the families serve as volunteer hosts for a week. These churches then provide the volunteers for their chosen week, helping to support the hosting church.

Volunteer Roles

While the needs of our guest families change each year, some volunteer roles are needed more often than others. Here is a brief description of the most commonly needed volunteer shifts. If you decide to volunteer, more detailed information will be provided to you in advance of your shift!

  • Dinner Host.  Prepare a meal in advance, arrive at the church in the evening of your assigned host day, warm or finish cooking the food, set out a table to eat at, and enjoy your meal along with the guest families. This is typically a 1 1/2 hour time commitment.
  • Overnight Host.  Arrive at the church after dinner is over, make sure that all guests have made it into the church for the night, sleep overnight at the church, and then make sure that all guests go to work or school in the morning. This is typically an 11 hour time commitment.

We can always use your help! To add your name to our list of those interested in volunteering for IHN, you can reach us via email any time at outreach@stpaulschestnuthill.org.

Learn More

About PIHN

To learn more about Philadelphia’s Interfaith Hospitality Network, visit their website at www.philashelter.org

Want to Help Out?

We can always use your help! To add your name to our list of those interested in volunteering for IHN, you can reach us via email any time at outreach@stpaulschestnuthill.org.