Homefront, Inc.

Helping families to break the cycle of poverty.

aka HomeFront   |   Lawrenceville, NJ   |  www.homefrontnj.org

Mission

HomeFront's mission is to end homelessness in Central New Jersey by harnessing the caring, resources and expertise of the community.

We lessen the immediate pain of homelessness and help families become self-sufficient.

We give people skills and opportunities to ensure adequate incomes and to increase the availability of adequate affordable housing.

We help homeless families advocate for themselves individually and collectively.

Notes from the nonprofit

HomeFront's Core Beliefs: We believe that families deserve safe, secure housing. We believe that with the right tools, education, job and life skills training, all families can succeed. We believe that families need basic necessities to live a life with dignity. We believe that with sufficient opportunity, children nurtured by love and support can grow to realize all of life's possibilities.

Ruling year info

1993

Executive Director

Ms. Connie Mercer

Main address

1880 Princeton Ave

Lawrenceville, NJ 08648 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

22-3165145

NTEE code info

Temporary Shelter For the Homeless (L41)

Children's and Youth Services (P30)

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

HomeFront works to help break the inter-generational cycle of poverty for homeless and very low-income families with children by offering emergency and transitional shelter, empowering life-skills, academic and vocational assistance, meaningful enrichment opportunities and nurturing wrap-around support they need to change the trajectory of their lives.

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?

Prevention/Emergency Assistance

In order to keep at-risk families from becoming homeless and to help them stabilize their living situations, HomeFront provides households with emergency funds for back rent, security deposits and utilities in conjunction with intensive case management. If necessary, we provide a temporary emergency residence, employment skills training and one-to-one help with job searching and job interviews.

Population(s) Served
Families
Economically disadvantaged people

At HomeFront we address the problem of homelessness from all sides. We not only provide immediate emergency housing and work with families to find and retain affordable housing, but we also develop and manage permanent housing units in order to ensure affordable residential stability for as many households as possible.

In addition to providing safe and secure emergency and transitional shelter, HomeFront provides 115 affordable and supportive rental housing units for working low-income families in buildings located in communities throughout Mercer County. Our housing case workers offer ongoing assistance and guidance to tenant families as needed.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
Families

Our programs give clients the tools, skills and desire to enter the workforce and become productive members of the community. As each person moves toward his or her goal, there are critical steps that must be completed to promote their success, including:

Basic life skills: budgeting, cooking, anger management, parenting
Basic literacy
Earning High School Equivalency Diplomas
Basic computer skills
Learning skills to secure and maintain employment
Addressing barriers to success
Developing time specific plans and goals for entering the workplace

Population(s) Served
Adults
Economically disadvantaged people

The Joy, Hopes & Dreams Program is proud to offer a stellar line-up of engaging, fun and enriching activities to the underprivileged youngsters we serve. Sadly, many children from families facing homelessness or severe economic hardship don't have regular access to programs that offer help with schoolwork and tutoring; or arts and music classes; team sports; or trips to popular events and venues. But HomeFront's Joy, Hopes & Dreams program works hard to make sure they do!

The program offers an afterschool and weekend agenda that works year-round to meet all of the educational and emotional needs of the children involved. We understand that academic success is critical to the children's futures so tutoring is provided three nights a week.

After school programs are held almost every day of the week. Volunteers, who frequently become friends and mentors, staff the sessions. Dinner is served, and after the study sessions, the children have an opportunity to interact with each other. We emphasize reading skills and provide a reading specialist.
After-school programs are held almost every day of the week. Children attend art classes on Thursdays and a theater presentation once each quarter in conjunction with the Arts Council of Princeton and McCarter Theatre. Educational and recreational activities are held almost every weekend. These events include field trips to the zoo, the State Aquarium, or the theater. We always provide meals and transportation when necessary.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Economically disadvantaged people

The ArtSpace at HomeFront helps build self-esteem and seeks to improve and enhance the physical, mental and emotional well-being of our clients. We believe that the creative process involved in self-expression helps people resolve conflicts and problems, develop interpersonal skills, manage behavior, reduce stress, increase self-esteem and self-awareness, and achieve insight.

Our innovative therapeutic art program primarily consists of painting, machine sewing and knitting. These activities build on our clients’ own resources to help them discover their inner strengths and "find themselves" by losing themselves in artistic production. Practiced communally or individually, guided art growth promotes socialization, self-confidence and self-expression among individuals who are struggling to cope because of poverty, homelessness and/or abuse. We encourage our clients to tap into their creativity which often opens doors to new ways of thinking and reveals their voice. We are also using an entrepreneurial model to market and sell the work of our hands in order to teach and model practical and self-sustaining life skills.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth

When they become homeless, typical amilies frequently lose almost all of their worldly possessions in the resulting tumult. After we stabilize families, we help them establish new homes by providing them with free furniture, clothing and other household items donated by the community.

These very low income families are struggling to survive but do not have the means to buy the things they need. Through this program, HomeFront furnishes nearly 600 apartments per year.

We recycle thousands of things that might otherwise end up in landfills and through their largess, we provide a tax deduction to donors.

Population(s) Served
Families
Homeless people

Our FreeStore provides previously homeless and working poor families with donated household and clothing items needed to create and maintain a home. HomeFront's FreeStore is an incredible community resource for our client-families and also a great Work-First community placement opportunity.

Impoverished families with fast growing kids have an opportunity to pick out new clothes. Parents tell us that having decent clothes that fit makes all the difference, for their self-conscious teens in particular.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Adults

Hundreds of families in Mercer County must decide each month whether to buy food or to pay the rent. Emergency food bags are available from HomeFront's FoodPantry for the growing number of families and seniors who can't afford enough food to make it through the month. HomeFront distributes approximately 800 bags of free groceries to low-income families each month. Your financial support helps stock the shelves of our food pantry. Food is obtained from the Mercer Street Friends food bank, USDA surplus items and local food drives.

HomeFront also coordinates the delivery of donated hot meals prepared by area congregations and community groups. These dedicated volunteers also donate and prepare food for HomeFront events from holiday parties to graduation ceremonies. To participate contact us at [email protected] .

Last year we distributed more than $2.6 million worth of donated goods and professional services to our families.

Emergency Food Bags
Once a month, clients may receive a grocery bag filled with a week's supply of food from our food pantry. Food is obtained from the Mercer Street Friends food bank, USDA surplus items and local food drives.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
Seniors

At the Family Preservation Center (FPC), our emergency family shelter, located at the Family Campus, HomeFront ensures that homeless families in our community have a safe and dignified place to sleep, nutritious meals to eat, academic and vocational opportunities, and the emotional and practical support they need to become stable and independent. We also offer our guests, parents and children alike, diverse life-affirming enrichment and recreational experiences to engage each person, open their eyes to life's potential and hopefully, to give them a renewed sense of self-worth.

Population(s) Served
Homeless people
Families

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

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

Total number of clients experiencing homelessness

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

Families

Related Program

Affordable, Service-Enriched Permanent Housing

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Decreasing

Context Notes

209 vulnerable families with 219 children received intensive support and were sheltered with dignity at our Emergency Family Shelter at our Family Campus and in our transitional housing.

Number of meals served or provided

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

Homeless people, Low-income people

Related Program

The Food Pantry

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Over 378,500 meals were provided through free bags of groceries in our food pantry program to local families in need.

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

Related Program

Affordable, Service-Enriched Permanent Housing

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

151 families received emergency housing assistance to keep them in their homes or to pay security deposits to acquire decent housing.

Number of students receiving homework help

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

Children and youth

Related Program

Joy, Hopes and Dreams Children's Enrichment

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

We do our best to help homeless children to thrive academically by providing the support they need to overcome economic disadvantage and the chaos and trauma of their young lives.

Number of people no longer living in unaffordable, overcrowded housing as a result of the nonprofit's efforts

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

Families

Related Program

Affordable, Service-Enriched Permanent Housing

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

155 working, low income families with 194 children lived in HomeFront's permanent, subsidized rental housing units. HomeFront also provides case-management support to ensure stability.

Number of clients satisfied with employment training services

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

Adults

Related Program

Tools for Self Sufficiency

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

179 young parents were given the tools to improve their academic functioning, received their high school equivalency diploma or secured employment through our Hire Expectations program.

Number of clients served

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

Families

Related Program

The Food Pantry

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Over 25,040 individuals were fed through our food pantries and community meals.

Number of volunteers

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

Adults

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

Over 3,100 volunteers worked 29,500+ hours on behalf of HomeFront families, tutoring adults and children, helping in childcare, the food pantry, the front desk, collections and numerous other ways.

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.

HomeFront's mission is to end homelessness in Central New Jersey by harnessing the caring, resources and expertise of the community.

We aim to lessen the immediate pain of homelessness and help families become
self-sufficient.

We support adults and children alike to become healthy and resilient and to overcome personal and societal obstacles.

We work to give our clients the skills and opportunities to ensure adequate incomes, and we work to increase the availability of adequate, affordable housing.

We help homeless families advocate for themselves individually and collectively.

HomeFront has developed a holistic array of services for clients who are either homeless or at high risk of becoming so. We have organized our service strategies into Four Pillars:

1) Safe, Supportive Housing
- Emergency Shelter at our Family Preservation Center
- Transitional Living, For At-Risk Households
- Permanent, Affordable, Service-Enriched Housing
- Homelessness Prevention, Keeping Families in their Homes

2) Tools for Self-Sufficiency
- Remedial Education Support (Toward High School Diplomas)
- Job Training
- Formal Life Skills
- Life Enhancement
- Therapeutic Counseling and Case Management

3) Support for Children
- Year-Round, Extra-Curricular Recreational and Academic Enrichment Programming
- Child-Focused Case Management
- Licensed Pre-School and Child Care
- Summer Camp
- Back-to-School/Birthday/Christmas Wishes

4) Resource Network & Distribution
- Food Pantry and Meal Preparation
- Furniture and Other Goods to Furnish New Apartments
- Clothes and Personal Care Items
- Pro Bono Donations of Time and Expertise

On any given night, we provide emergency shelter, transitional housing and permanent service-enriched housing to over 470 people, two-thirds of them children.

Some of our many services include case management, homelessness prevention services (including back rent & utility assistance), emergency food, free clothing and household goods at our FreeStore, affordable housing searches, job placement and readiness skills.

We have wonderful collaborations with congregations, corporations and organizations who assist in our mission of returning families to independence. HomeFront utilizes all segments of the community to accomplish its mission of providing comprehensive programs which enable formerly homeless families to become independent, contributing members of the community.

An estimated 4,000+ volunteers work with us each year to provide families with everything from food, goods and services to assistance in locating jobs and housing. Without these dedicated and caring volunteers, many of our programs, such as our week-night tutoring program and hot meals for motel families, would not be possible.

On any given night, HomeFront provides shelter and case management to approximately 470 individuals, the vast majority children, through our emergency shelter, transitional units, and our supportive and affordable, permanent housing.

In fiscal year 2019-2020 (October 1, 2019 - September 30,2020):
32,417 - the number of times families came to us for, and were given – shelter, food and emergency assistance.
155 families with 194 children lived in HomeFront's permanent affordable housing.
1,219 visits were made to receive services at our health clinic including sick visits, mental health services, domestic violence support, well-baby visits, COVID-19 tests and general health screenings.
151 families received emergency housing assistance to keep them in their homes or to pay security deposits to acquire decent housing.
179 young parents were given the tools to improve their academic functioning, received their high school diploma or secured employment through our Hire Expectations program. Over 2,080 visits were made to our FreeStore by clients in need of clothing and household items.
More than 219 families furnished their homes through our Furnish the Future program. Over 378,500 meals were provided through free bags of groceries in our food pantry program to local families in need.
147 children made memories to grow on in our year-round Joy, Hopes & Dreams programming of educational and enrichment activities.
86 children attended our high quality, trauma-informed child care center.

Financials

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

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Homefront, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 6/21/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Ruth Scott

Patrice Coleman-Boatwright

Cooper Creative Group

Sangita Karra

Wells Fargo Private Bank

Brian Kasper

Stark & Stark

Rose Mazzella

Bank of America

Michael Moorman

Pfizer

Anthony Stewart

Lawrence Ford Lincoln

Lloyd Ricketts

The College of New Jersey

Amy Vogel

Richard Weidel

Weidel Real Estate

Elizabeth Wasch

Michael Van Wagner

NJM Insurance Group

Claudia Kelly

Federal Reserve Bank of New York

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 12/01/2020

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, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data