The mission of St. Herman House - FOCUS Cleveland is to shelter and support homeless men on the path to wellbeing and independence, and meet the basic needs of people in our community.
St. Herman House was founded in 1977 as an Orthodox Christian monastery with a mission of serving the homeless and poor. In 2013, St. Herman’s became part of FOCUS North America, a national Orthodox Christian 501(c)(3). St. Herman's is no longer a monastery but its original purpose remains the same: serving the homeless and poor.
Today, there are 6 programs:
- Hot Meal Program-- Three hot meals a day, 365 days a year, to anyone in need. We are the only facility in the city of Cleveland that provides three hot meals a day to the public. In 2018 we served almost 76,000 meals. We are a member agency of the Greater Cleveland Food Bank.
- Emergency Shelter -- Emergency shelter for 28 men in our main house.
- Transitional Housing -- Transitional housing three doors down from the main house for 12 men. Men are eligible to live in the transitional house if they have a source of income, six months of sobriety, and are working with a case manager. Residents pay a program fee (approximately $300 per month), equivalent to subsidized rent. In 2018, we housed 95 men in the shelter and transitional house.
- Resident Services and Referral Program -- We connect all residents with local agencies for case management. Through referrals and collaboration, we support each resident to address unemployment, substance abuse, mental health and other barriers to independent living.
- Jobs and Life Skills Program -- At present, this program has several components. Men in the main house work in temporary positions - typically custodial and landscaping - for which they are paid. There are also unpaid positions within the house that are filled by residents. These include drivers, cooks, beekeepers, cleaners, and administrative positions. The paid and unpaid positions give structure to the day, build a sense of responsibility, and give the men experience that can help in finding permanent employment. At any given time, approximately half the residents of the shelter are engaged in part or full-time paid employment.
- Basic Needs – We give away clothing to men year-round. Our food pantry distributes grocery bags during the last five weekdays of each month to families with dependents. Sandwiches and toiletry kits are handed out daily as needed.
FOCUS North America is a national movement of Orthodox Christians, united in faith and joined by a desire to provide action-oriented and sustainable solutions to poverty in communities across America. FOCUS has operations and youth volunteer experiences in more than 50 cities in the United States.
As an expression of Christ’s love FOCUS North America serves the hungry, thirsty, stranger, naked, sick and imprisoned by providing Food, Occupation, Clothing, Understanding, and Shelter.
Why We’re Here
Through the provision of social and human development services, FOCUS North America helps the poor and needy in North America. We bring communities, parishes, and partners together in hands-on activities – uniting giver and the underserved — to help transform all of our lives and break the cycle of poverty that afflicts so many in our society.
To learn more about FOCUS North America, see the website here.