House of Mercy Homeless Center

The House of Mercy is a 25-bed homeless center in Janesville that offers homeless families short-term emergency shelter and access to housing, job placement, and child care resources. Staff at the Center assist the homeless in assessing their needs, obtaining appropriate referrals and services, and designing an action plan aimed at achieving more stable housing.

Why was the House of Mercy established?

In the mid-1990s, Mercy Health System president/CEO Javon R. Bea noticed that many families seeking treatment at Mercy’s emergency department listed their family car as their address. He knew Mercy could do more than tend to their health care needs. After researching the level of homelessness in the area and finding a desperate need for emergency shelter, he developed a vision, which resulted in the opening and naming of the House of Mercy Homeless Center in August 1996.

Who supports the House of Mercy?

  • Volunteers give approximately 8,000 hours of service per year
  • Lutheran Social Services facilitates a parenting group
  • Childcare is available to residents through Community Kids Learning Center
  • Donations from individuals and organizations provide ongoing support
  • UW Extensions offers a cooking class once a month for residents to help develop their meal planning and preparation skills

Is the House of Mercy accomplishing its objectives?

  • Since it opened in 1996, the House of Mercy has provided shelter and support to more than 5,500 people.
  • More than 50% of these people were children.
  • It is usually filled to capacity with a waiting list.

How can I help?

  • Donate today!
  • Volunteer your time; about 8 to 12 hours per month is needed.
  • Call (608) 754-0045 for a Wish List of needed items. There is also an online wish list.
  • Make a financial contribution payable to House of Mercy, 320 Lincoln St., Janesville, WI 53548.
  • Invite us to your next gathering. House of Mercy staff will tell the “House of Mercy Story” to area service clubs, organizations, and churches.