IMG_1832The mission of Family Promise of Southern Chester County is to provide a sustainable, self-sufficient livelihood consisting of emergency food, shelter and counseling for all families and their children experiencing homelessness in Southern Chester County, Pennsylvania.

Host congregations take turns 4 times per year hosting guests in their buildings evenings and overnights for one week at a time.  Family Promise provides cots and bedding, and most congregations set up their educational rooms as temporary bedrooms for each of the guest families. Host congregations must have enough space to host up to four separate families — up to fourteen people — at a time. Showers and laundry facilities are available at the Family Center, so it is not necessary for congregations to have these amenities.

Support congregations work with host congregations by providing volunteer support.  Duties are divided between or among host congregations and support congregations. Typically each will provide an evening meal prepared by volunteers from the congregation for 4 evenings during the week, volunteers to provide fellowship with guests during dinner and evening hours for 4 evenings during the week, two volunteers to stay overnight with guests for 4 nights during the week, and assistance with gathering continental breakfast and packed lunch supplies for the families.

Host congregations are responsible for transporting the cots, setting up the temporary bedrooms, and cleaning and rearranging after the Family Promise guests have moved to the next congregation.

Each host and support congregation has a Volunteer Coordinator to communicate with the Executive Director and to schedule volunteers. The host congregation’s Volunteer Coordinator communicates directly with the support congregation’s Volunteer Coordinator to work out a schedule for each hosting week, agree on procedures, and familiarize support volunteers with the building.

The Family Promise of Southern Chester County staff works closely with the congregations throughout the process, and is on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Network congregations are welcome to and often support Family Promise of Southern Chester County financially through their budgets, but this is not a requirement.

To learn more about becoming a host or support congregation, email Susan Minarchi @


common area for relaxing in the evenings, at one of our Host Congregations


a sample bedroom at one of our Host Congregations