South Oakland Shelter

Building equitable communities and alleviating poverty.

aka Lighthouse MI   |   Pontiac, MI   |  www.lighthousemi.org

Mission

We endeavor to build equitable communities and alleviate poverty in partnership with and in service to individuals, families, and organizations

Ruling year info

1989

President & CEO

Ryan Brandt Hertz

Main address

46156 Woodward Ave

Pontiac, MI 48342 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

38-2847849

NTEE code info

Temporary Shelter For the Homeless (L41)

Housing Expense Reduction Support, Rent Assistance (L82)

Housing Search Assistance (L30)

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

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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?

Emergency Shelter

Thanks to partnerships with over 60 Oakland County congregations, Lighthouse operates a 30 bed year-round rotating shelter servicing individuals and families. Each week, a congregation takes on the responsibility of hosting SOS's shelter guests, providing them with: overnight accommodations, three daily meals, transportation, and daily meaningful interactions with caring volunteers.

During the 2019-20 fiscal year, Lighthouse provided 299 individuals (192 adults and 107 children) with shelter, totally 13,899 nights of lodging and 41,697 meals.

Population(s) Served
Homeless people

Implementing housing-first programming allows Lighthouse to serve more people while reducing the increased community costs associated with re-stabilizing a greater number of people exposed to the trauma of homelessness. Lighthouse provides critical housing assistance programs targeting specific sub-populations, including: Chronic-Homeless Leasing Assistance Program, Rapid Re-Housing, and Supportive Housing for Individuals and Families in Transition.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Once housed, Lighthouse clients may enter into Follow-up Care. Case managers provide in-home services for one year to assist clients in maintaining their housing. Lighthouse believes the continuation of supportive services to recently re-housed clients is key in successfully transitioning households from homelessness to long-term self-sufficiency. During the 2019-20 fiscal year, Lighthouse provided follow-up care to 156 individuals and 96% of clients maintained their housing.

Population(s) Served

HandUp is a web-based crowdfunding platform that has enabled more than 100 homeless service agencies across the United States to raise over $2.45 million for specific client assistance.

Population(s) Served
Homeless people

Lighthouse provides emergency food supplies to families in need in Oakland County. In addition to food pantry locations in Pontiac and Clarkston, Lighthouse partners with local congregations and groups throughout the county to provide more food distribution locations. After the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Lighthouse opened a food warehouse in Waterford to begin providing delivery of emergency food to clients in need.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Adults
Families

Where we work

Awards

Most Outstanding Volunteer Program 2009

Governor's Service Award

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 bed nights (nights spent in shelter)

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

2020 = fiscal year 2020-21

Number of shelter clients that exited into stable housing

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

2020 = 2020-21 fiscal year

Number of individuals served through our transitional housing program

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

2020 = 2020-21 fiscal year

Number of individuals served through our housing programs, including Rapid Re-Housing, Permanent and Supportive Housing, and Follow-Up Care

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

2020 = 2020-21 fiscal year

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.

What we learned throughout 2020 and in the months following, is that while our team was able to sufficiently meet the increased need, our response was merely a short-term band-aid to a wide-scale, systemic issue. While COVID-19 exacerbated the needs of those struggling prior to the pandemic and impacted others for the first time, it also showed us a better way to serve people. With more attention and support from our community of donors, volunteers, and local officials, Lighthouse has been able to serve more people, more efficiently, and with more dignity than ever before. We now have a much better understanding of what is needed.

Lighthouse aims to increase our role in the emergency food services to help meet Oakland County’s scope of need, explore increased emergency shelter availability for children, adults, and families, become a leader in educating and inspiring members of the community to alleviate poverty, and increase services to existing clients through programs like the Center for Working Families.

The sense of urgency around sheltering the homeless and providing food to families in the midst of a pandemic shifted funding and program policies in a way that allowed us to serve a greater number of people in need. Lighthouse plans to work with community leaders, partner agencies, and government officials to continue serving at this heightened level while working towards implementing long-term solutions to the problems our community faces. We know what to do, and if given the right opportunities with the right partners and adequate funding, we can work together to alleviate poverty within Oakland County.

As one of the only emergency shelters equipped to serve families, and one of only a few 5-day a week food pantries that also offers food delivery in Oakland County, Lighthouse has been at the forefront of serving low-income families for decades. We know the struggles our neighbors face and the toll poverty takes on families and communities.

Lighthouse has identified the goals listed above as part of our strategic plan for the organization and is working to connect with community leaders, partner agencies, and government officials to help accomplish these goals. We have been growing our team to help us keep up with the growing demand in our community and are working with experts on long-term plans. Stay tuned to our website for more updates.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    Individuals and families experiencing homelessness, food insecurity, and financial instability residing in Southeast Michigan.

  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    SMS text surveys, Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Paper surveys, Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Case management notes, Community meetings/Town halls,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    The agency’s telephone system was redesigned so that clients now dial one telephone number in order to be connected with any of the agency’s resources or supportive services. Before, clients or potential clients would have to call specific departments, each with their own unique telephone number, to gain assistance. Clients stated this process, when they were already in crisis, left them feeling overwhelmed and frustrated. In response, a centralized telephone system was created and now clients dial one telephone number and can respond to either phone prompts or speak to a live individual for assistance with any of our services.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • How has asking for feedback from the people you serve changed your relationship?

    It’s improved relationships between service providers and clients and positively impacted program development and resources to be more reflective of clients’ needs.

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback,

Financials

South Oakland Shelter
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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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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.

South Oakland Shelter

Board of directors
as of 10/28/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Richard Lewnau

Ryan Hertz

Lighthouse MI

John Harvey

Serenity Christian Church

William Mott

St. John Providence Health System

Richard Lewnau

Paul Plante

Jim Ciroli

Flagstar Bank

Paddy Lynch

Lynch & Sons Funeral Directors

Harry Maisel

Susan Wellman

Keating Network

Jackie Buchanan

Genisys Credit Union

James Carpenter

Bank of America

Manisha Dostert

Christ Church Cranbrook

Lamontre Harris

Honor Health

Jim Lambrecht

Lambrecht Realty

Sonja Lengnick

Kienbaum Hardy Viviano Pelton Forrest

Colleen Ochoa Peters

Meaningful Impact

Rachel Pica

Dean Rocheleau

Plante Moran

Jacqui Spicer

Baker College

John Townsend

Bruce Turpin

The Wellness Plan

Dennis Blender

Blender Consulting Group

Jonathan Burleigh

Bodman PLC

Sammie Rayner

HandUp

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 07/20/2021

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
Male

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data