Nationally, over 45 million people are living in poverty and nearly 31 million Americans live in hunger or on the edge of hunger. Homelessness and hunger are real issues in our own community. In 2011, Reading, Pennsylvania was declared the city with the largest share of residents living in poverty of every city in the nation with a population of 65,000 or more.
Opportunity House has been helping the homeless population of our area since November 1984 and has expanded profoundly since then. In addition to offering an emergency shelter that served nearly 500 people and 96,547 meals last year, we offer a 24/7 childcare and learning center, services from the Children's Alliance Center, assistance for veterans, and reuse and recycle services that reinvest funds back into our agency in order to further support our mission and services.
Know The Facts:
89% of every dollar Opportunity House receives goes directly toward providing services to clients.
- Our emergency shelter provided 21,990 nights of shelter to 457 individuals, 48 of which were veterans.
- Our transitional housing program provided shelter to 11 families composed of 12 adults and 21 children.
- Our permanent housing program provided shelter to 5 families, composed of 10 adults and 7 children, and 7 single adults.
- Our Second Street Learning Center enrolled 476 children, 98% of which came from homes at or below the poverty level.
- Our Children's Alliance Center provided 451 children with forensic interviews and support.
- Our Supportive Services for Veterans Families program provided 385 veterans and their families (209 households) with supportive services, including financial assistance and case management.
- Our Reuse and Recycle program recycled 55,300 tons of books and 33,000 tons of clothing.
- Our dedicated volunteers, composed of 1,000 individuals and groups throughout Reading and Berks County, volunteered a total of 14,700 hours of service and served over 51,000 meals to our emergency shelter clients.