Inter-Faith Housing Alliance

an affiliate of Family Promise

Ambler, PA   |  www.i-fha.org

Mission

Inter-Faith Housing Alliance provides opportunities for families in our diverse community to achieve self-sufficiency by offering community-based programs designed to bridge homelessness and independence.

Ruling year info

1989

Executive Director

Marsha Eichelberger

Main address

31 South Spring Garden Street

Ambler, PA 19002 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

22-2708420

NTEE code info

Temporary Shelter For the Homeless (L41)

Other Housing Support Services (L80)

Other Housing, Shelter N.E.C. (L99)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Inter-Faith Housing Alliance is working to address homelessness, poverty, and food insecurity.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Interfaith Hospitality Network/Emergency Shelter Program

Consisting of 22 partner congregations, the Inter-Faith Hospitality Network responds to families with children experiencing homelessness in the Montgomery County region by providing safe, temporary shelter and other support services geared towards increasing self-sufficiency.

The Inter-Faith Hospitality Network’s service delivery model is unique and cost-effective. "Host" congregations serve our families for one month each year at their places of worship. Families experiencing homelessness are allowed stays of up to 90 days, during which they eat and sleep at the congregations in classrooms that have been converted into bedrooms. Congregational volunteers, who collectively contribute more than 3,000 hours of their time each year, provide meals, overnight supervision, and transportation as needed. In the morning, families visit IFHA, where staff provides important counseling, case management, and support services to help families resolve their homelessness.

Although it works in partnership with community congregations, the program is non-denominational. The families that IFHA serves in the shelter program meet the Federal guidelines for very low or extremely low incomes. While they may be two-parent families, most are single-parent, female-headed households with young children.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth

In the more than 25 years we have worked with families, we recognize that a 90-day stay in an emergency shelter is rarely, if ever, enough time to heal from the traumas that impede positive life changes. In response to this significant need, IFHA opened Hope Gardens in 1995 to serve as a stabilizing transitional housing program. Families referred to IFHA by Montgomery County’s Your Way Home are housed for up to 2 years, during which time they receive comprehensive support services and work towards identified goals for a successful transition to safe, affordable, decent housing.

Hope Gardens continues to operate with the goal of providing a program that offers supportive case management services, therapeutic counseling, and safe, affordable rental units to homeless families progressing from crisis to stability. The program is located in an eight-unit building consisting of two-, three-, and four-bedroom apartments where families can live while they gain the tools they need to become successfully independent, therefore breaking the cycle of homelessness many find themselves in. Families living at Hope Gardens receive comprehensive support services to help ensure their success, including:

• Intensive case management – Case management staff helps each family at Hope Gardens develop practical, attainable goals, which include creating a workable budget, obtaining childcare, finding employment, applying for subsidized and permanent housing, and creating a savings plan.
• Therapeutic counseling – Each parent residing at Hope Gardens may receive weekly on-site individual counseling. Therapeutic counseling is critical to our clients’ intentionally improving their life skills and decision-making abilities, and developing the internal resources necessary to be self-sufficient.
• Life skills training – Families living at Hope Gardens participate in a series of educational workshops, which focus on topics such as financial literacy, budgeting and credit repair, positive parenting, stress management, and healthy relationships.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth

Our fourth program at Inter-Faith Housing Alliance – our Supportive Housing Program at Hope Forest - opened in January 2017. This exciting project is serving as a permanent housing demonstration project in Montgomery County. The Supportive Housing Program offers two families an affordable housing option in the heart of Ambler. Through a partnership with First Presbyterian Church of Ambler, IFHA was gifted this two-family home to provide the first privately operated supportive housing program in Montgomery County.

During the last half of the 2016 fiscal year, IFHA partnered with multiple volunteer groups who provided in-kind donations and hands-on help to make the house move-in ready. We are particularly proud of this partnership and are honored by the commitment and trust of First Presbyterian Church. Because the program is funded with private money, we can mirror best practices while affording a high degree of programming flexibility that other permanent housing programs that are government funded cannot. The Supportive Housing Program is one of our most notable organizational accomplishments in our over 25-year history.

As reported in the Corporation for Supportive Housing’s July 2014 issue, "access to safe, quality, affordable housing – and the supports necessary to maintain that housing – constitute one of the most basic and powerful social determinants of health.” Families pay fair market rent and receive general oversight from a case manager on a diminishing schedule until they have secured necessary skills to gain and maintain a living wage job and have resolved the debilitating issues that have been a barrier to stability in their past.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth

A relatively new program developed as an extension of the Education Program and our general evaluation efforts, the Aftercare Program was implemented to increase the long-term stability and housing tenancy of formerly homeless families who graduated from IFHA’s transitional and emergency shelter programs by providing limited case management, financial assistance, and holiday programs. These recent graduates receive support services at a time when they are most vulnerable – living in permanent housing for the first time since becoming homeless. Some families continue to receive support services from IFHA to ensure their independence and self-sufficiency, such as access to the on-site food pantry and copier/fax machine.

Currently overseen by a volunteer, the After Care Specialist stays in regular contact with graduate families who have moved on to permanent housing to support their continued advancements and offer resources as needed to keep the families on track. While supporting families, the After Care Specialist also learns about specific challenges the families face so we can make adjustments to our education program and support services to better prepare our current residents for a successful transition to permanent housing. Ensuring the stability of this currently volunteer-provided service is a future goal.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth

When families enter our housing program, many have had to leave valuable possessions behind. They arrive with few personal goods and often lack even the most basic essential items. Once safely housed in our program, the need for basic supplies continues – they often lack household goods essential for day-to-day household maintenance and functionality, and maintaining adequate food can be a continuing challenge. Even upon graduating from our programs, families remain vulnerable for some time to disruptions in their stability while they work at building their assets and maintenance of consistent, adequate income. This year we began building our Basic Needs Program to provide comprehensive support in the form of basic needs supplies and temporary financial assistance to cover expenses that threaten to disrupt a family’s progress towards stability.

Population(s) Served
Adults

The Inter-Faith Food Cupboard is located at 1356 Easton Road in Roslyn, PA. Open six days a week, the Food Cupboard is an important way in which IFHA supports Montgomery County families who are experiencing hunger as a result of poverty. The program provides a variety of foods to low-income residents of Montgomery County to reduce food insecurity and improve nutrition. It is a "choice” pantry, where participants are able to select the foods that they are most likely to prepare and eat.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Inter-Faith Housing Alliance has been awarded Federal Emergency Food and Shelter Program CARES funding and is making rental relief available for qualifying Montgomery County renters who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Awards

Humanitarian Organization of the Year 2014

Eastern Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce

Citizen of the Week (March 8) for ED Marsha Eichelberger 2014

Ambler Gazette

Inter-Faith Award for former ED Laura Wall 2014

Bethlehem Baptist Church & Wissahickon Faith Community

Yaffe–Robert Johnson Smith Civil Rights Awards for former ED Laura Wall 2012

Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission

Zone of Peace 2014

The Religious Leaders Council of Greater Philadelphia

Upper Dublin Medal-Outstanding Community Non-Profit Organization 2020

Upper Dublin Township

Affiliations & memberships

Affiliate/Chapter of National Organization (i.e. Girl Scouts of the USA, American Red Cross, etc.) - Affiliate/chapter 1990

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of volunteers

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Homeless people, Economically disadvantaged people

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This metric measures the number of volunteers who dedicate their time to helping our organization. The 2020 decrease in volunteers reflects social distance requrements due to COVID.

Number of clients served

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Homeless people, Economically disadvantaged people

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This metric measures how many total people have been served by our various programs, focusing on our transitional housing, emergency shelter, and food cupboard programs.

Number of low-income families housed in affordable, well-maintained units as a result of the nonprofit's efforts

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Homeless people, Economically disadvantaged people

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

This metric measures the number of individuals that make up the families served through both our Hope Gardens transitional housing program and our Emergency Shelter program.

Number of program graduates

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Homeless people, Economically disadvantaged people

Related Program

Hope Gardens/Transitional Housing Program

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This metric measures the number of families that successfully leave our Hope Gardens transitional housing program.

Volunteer hours

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Homeless people, Economically disadvantaged people

Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This metric measures how many volunteer hours were completed for I-FHA. The decrease in 2020 reflects social distancing requirements due to COVID.

Dollars donated to support organization and programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Economically disadvantaged people, Homeless people

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This metric measures the contributions and grants given to our organization. 2016 total includes a one-time gift to purchase a property for our Supportive Housing Program.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

IFHA's main goal is to prevent homelessness in Montgomery County, PA. We collaborate with Your Way Home, Montgomery County's award-winning collective impact initiative, as well as other non-profit organizations and foundations in the area, to work towards providing shelter and supportive services to those who are experiencing homelessness, with the ultimate goal of making homelessness rare, brief, and nonrecurring.

IFHA aims to promote self-sufficiency among families experiencing the crisis of homelessness. We offer extensive after care services to all of our clients in order to help them retain the stable housing they obtain after they graduate from our program.

We also address food insecurity in eastern Montgomery County with our Inter-Faith Food Cupboard, located in Abington, PA, which served more than 2,100 individuals in FY2021.

To fulfill our goal of making homelessness rare, brief, and nonrecurring, IFHA connects families to multiple services and resources. Through partnerships with 25 congregations, more than 600 volunteers, and 35-plus foundations and corporations, we offer:

• Emergency shelter (90 days) through the Interfaith Hospitality Network (20 families/year).
• Transitional shelter (2 years) at Hope Gardens (8 families/year).
• An affordable housing option in the form of a two-family home with fair market rent through our Supportive Housing Program at Hope Forest (2 families/year).
• Healthy food options through the Inter-Faith Food Cupboard (2,500 individuals/year).
• Essential household items through the Basic Needs Program.
• Educational classes that fill residents' skill gaps through our Educational Program.
• Limited case management, financial assistance, and holiday programs through the Aftercare Program (25 families/year).
• Rental relief for Montgomery County families affected by the COVID-19 crisis (approximately 44 households to date).

Inter-Faith Housing Alliance has mobilized volunteers and cultivated resources to prevent and resolve homelessness for more than 30 years. During this time, IFHA has proven very capable of meeting the needs presented by families experiencing homelessness in the Montgomery County region. I-FHA and its experienced staff offer emergency shelter, transitional housing, supportive housing, a food cupboard, case management, educational enhancements, after care services, a basic needs program, and rental relief, all of which provide families with services and supplies essential to improving their current state of homelessness.

IFHA also partners with Montgomery County's Your Way Home, 22 congregations in the faith community, and receives numerous grants from various corporations and foundations in order to ensure the continuance of these programs and services that offer help to our families.

During the 2021 fiscal year, the following outcomes were achieved by families residing in housing programs at I-FHA:

• 64 individuals, including 37 children, were served in our housing programs
• 10,132 bed-nights of shelter were provided in our three housing programs
• 2,176 individuals received food from the Food Cupboard
• 20 graduate families received aftercare

Financials

Inter-Faith Housing Alliance
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

Inter-Faith Housing Alliance

Board of directors
as of 10/12/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Mr. Wayne Carpenter

Lei Barry

Keller Williams Real Estate

Charles Quann

Bethlehem Baptist Church

John Armstrong

Armstrong Supply Co.

Ben Sanchez

Real Estate Attorney

Sally West Williams

Community Volunteer

Priya Bell

Network Building and Consulting

Kristie Chandler

Trinity Lutheran Church

Wanda Lewis-Campbell

Temple University Ambler

Sherry Shoemaker

Voice of Assurance Life Coaching

Malika Thomas

Community Volunteer

Mark Whaley

Community Volunteer

David Zimmerman

Community Volunteer

Kewin Gales

Prometrics LLC

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 02/09/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data