KentHOPE is a ministry of Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission in Kent, Washington, partnering with other faith-based groups, businesses, local community service agencies and concerned individuals who are dedicated to reducing homelessness in our community.
Our mission is to build community by providing stable pathways out of homelessness while caring for body, mind, and spirit.
On December 16, 2013, KentHOPE and Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission (SUGM) established the KentHOPE Day Center for Women and Children at 9009 Canyon Drive in Kent. We served women and their children in South King County, seven days a week, meeting their immediate needs and linking them to community resources to find jobs and housing.
In March of 2014, KentHOPE and SUGM initiated the KentHOPE Women’s Overnight Shelter, a rotating shelter hosted by Kent churches, April through October. (Holy Spirit Parish hosted the Catholic Community Services Women’s Winter Shelter, November through March.) In 2015, we were able to expand the number of overnight beds to 30, thanks to funding by the City of Seattle Human Services Department. Later that year, ten generous Kent churches began providing year ’round overnight shelter, in addition to Holy Spirit/Catholic Community Services’ 15 bed Women’s Winter Shelter. Thank you Kent United Methodist, New Hope Presbyterian, Kent Lutheran, Lutheran Church of the Cross, Kent Covenant, First Baptist, First Christian, Panther Lake Community, Valley View Christian, and Zion Lutheran!
In 2016 a partner church established a local safe parking site for families and individuals living in their cars. A social services case manager visited the site weekly to offer assistance.
Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission’s Search & Rescue volunteers delivered blankets, clothing, hot chocolate, encouragement and prayer to homeless sites in Kent on Wednesdays and Fridays year ’round. Interrupted by the Covid pandemic, Search & Rescue resumed services in South King County in August, 2022.
In March, 2020, KentHOPE began sheltering women overnight (instead of in churches) to better quarantine our guests and protect our church hosts, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In October, 2020, the Mission established the Link program to offer women, and for the first time, their children, a safe, temporary home while they work with case managers for retraining and job searches. The Bridge program continues to help women and women with children who need a bridge to recovery from addiction, homelessness, and other trauma. To better house these two programs, in fall of 2020 the Mission remodeled SonRise House, located immediately behind the KentHOPE Emergency Shelter. This facility increased our capacity from 30 to 52 women and children, both day and night.
Since opening in December 2013, KentHOPE has helped more than 760 women and their children transition out of homelessness!