calendar February 9, 2016 in Congregations, Faith in action, Mission, Networking, News

Welcome Church Shelters ‘Women of the Well’

The Welcome Church is collaborating with a number of partners to provide nighttime housing for women experiencing homelessness in Center City.

The shelter, called “the Well,” will open at the Church of the Crucifixion at 8th and Bainbridge Streets on Sunday, Feb. 14. It will offer a place for gathering and renewal from 7:30 pm to 7:30 am through April 30.

  • Scroll down to learn how you can help by contributing and volunteering NOW!

A small group of women, who have been reluctant to enter traditional shelters, have banded together as “women of the Well” even before the Well opens, says Welcome Church Pastor Violet Little. “The women are so excited and hopeful” about this experiment in intentional community, she says.

Neighbors and members of Synod congregations are invited to assist by offering a prepared evening meal, teaching a class, or sharing any other gift you might have with the women of the Well.

The partnership includes Horizon House (who will assist with staffing and supervision), Trinity Memorial Episcopal Church (TMC) at 22nd and Spruce and the Episcopal Church of the Crucifixion. Funding for the project has come from a grant provided by the Presbytery of Philadelphia, the Episcopal Diocese, the Welcome Church, and a number of individual congregations and donors.

Participants of this initiative have been carefully selected, especially since The Well is a drug-free, alcohol-free, and violence-free zone.


Here’s how you can help:

Connect with Sharon ( about item donations

Connect with Fran ( about volunteering a meal

Send other inquiries to


Supplies and donations Volunteer opportunities
2 cots  (about $110 each)

24 twin size warm blankets

12 pillows

6 sets of twin size sheets

12 footlocker type bins (CONTICO 23-Gallon Black Plastic Storage Trunk Item #: 649196 |  Model #: 1314BK-4  ~$25.00 each)

12 locks for the bins

5 medium size bins for food storage in kitchen (for cereal, bread, etc. )

One 30-cup coffee maker (for hot water)

one standard coffee maker ($30.00)

4 standing lamps (about $20.00 each)

curtains and rods for doorways between rooms (ask for details or $17.00 each = $100)

14 chair cushions (with ties, for folding chairs)



Paperback books for leisure reading

Yarn for knitting; knitting needles and crochet hooks

Coloring books and coloring implements


Fuzzy, warm socks to double as slippers

Hand towels (not the small ones)

Wash cloths

Liquid hand soap



Dish liquid

Dishwashing cloths or sponges

Dish towels

Paper towels

Baggies (all sizes) for food storage

Small plastic containers for food storage


Boxes of Cereal for breakfast

Cereal bars

Instant oatmeal

Individual mac&cheese


Money always welcome for supplies such as coffee, milk, orange juice, cocoa, breakfast supplies, laundry, and details.


Ongoing supply of underwear, socks, bras (one-size type in small, medium, large)



Help to set up shelter between 2/8-14 (not set yet, will work with volunteers)

Make a meal for 12 and drop off at The Well at 7 p.m. (one each night or drop off ahead)

Shopper once a week for basics like o.j., milk, coffee, t.p., etc.

Offer yoga class once a week or just once

Offer craft night once a week or just once

Offer crochet or knitting lessons one evening

Offer a session to crochet plastic grocery bags into sleeping mats

Any evening program women might enjoy

Foot care evening

Cooking a meal together one evening (you bring ingredients and all cook together)