Amethyst Place, Inc.

Where families come home to heal

Kansas City, MO   |


The Noble Cause of Amethyst Place is to inspire transformational healing and empower generations of women and children to achieve recovery, reunification, and resilience. We do this through long-term supportive housing and wraparound supports to help families overcome generational poverty, substance use, and trauma.

Ruling year info


Executive Director

Ms. Starla Wulf Brennan

Main address

2735 Troost

Kansas City, MO 64109 USA

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NTEE code info

Other Housing Support Services (L80)

Alcohol, Drug Abuse (Treatment Only) (F22)

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (J01)

IRS filing requirement

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

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

It is often said that addiction is a family disease, yet the recovery process is rarely managed as such by the service system. Maternal substance use impacts the entire family. Addiction is often passed through generations, along with untreated mental health disorders, trauma, poverty, housing instability, family separation and foster care placement, poor educational attainment, and justice-system involvement. To help mothers recover from substance use while preventing these cycles among their children, a holistic, long-term, and evidence-based array of wraparound supports is needed to truly heal and empower families.

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?

Supportive Housing

Moms receive a fully furnished apartment and often reunify with their children within the first few months. They have access to a multitude of on-site services, including therapy, case management, a food and hygiene pantry, clothing closet, mobile medical and dental services, and evening programming to support life skill development and sustained recovery. Families commit to living here one year, though the actual length of stay is dependent upon each client’s progress toward mutually agreed upon goals. The average length of stay for current families is 20 months. Unlike more short-term transitional housing programs, families can remain at Amethyst Place as long as needed to prepare for independent living and achieve personal goals. Through the Graduate Aftercare Program, graduates can maintain connection to the Amethyst Place community and access support services after their transition to independent living.

Population(s) Served
Substance abusers
Non-adult children

This program provides moms with extensive support to pursue their educational and vocational goals. Our moms have limited work histories due to the challenges of single parenting, limited education, unreliable transportation, and justice system involvement. More than half of our residents enter our program without a high school diploma. Very few enter the program with a computer and the skills necessary to use one. Our Family Empowerment Program’s unique focus on advancing post-secondary education provides single mothers the rare opportunity to pursue their education while supporting their families thanks to our income-based housing. Investing in education allows mothers to pull their families out of poverty, which will profoundly impact future generations. Research has demonstrated that single mothers with a bachelor’s degree earn 62% more than those with a high school diploma ( Educational support is provided through volunteer-led tutoring for moms and children, GED preparation and testing, and a college assistance fund to help with school expenses. In addition, our 100 Jobs for 100 Moms program offers supported employment at one of 18 local employers that participate. Moms receive on-the-job mentorship, access to a career path, and financial incentives to celebrate job performance and participation in peer group meetings. Through the EnCompass mentoring program, moms develop positive social networks with two mentors, meeting twice a month for a meal and activity, and oftentimes receive additional support outside of scheduled sessions. Other elements of the Family Empowerment Program include community-based case management and the child mentoring program.

Population(s) Served
Substance abusers

Families have access to on-site therapeutic services provided by our Clinical team, which has expanded significantly in the past year to include a Director of Clinical Operations, Family Care Manager, Family Support Therapist, Child Therapist, Recovery Support Specialist, and often an MSW and/or BSW intern. More than 90% of current residents have a dual diagnosis: substance use disorder with co-occurring depression, anxiety, and/or PTSD. Prior to residency at Amethyst Place, our families face many barriers to addressing mental health issues including lack of transportation and child care, lack of phone and internet access, and frequent changes in therapists due to high mobility. Additionally, children often arrive with a host of emotional issues that are a result of separation from their parents and experiencing the chaos of parental substance use, making the need for family therapy essential to improving family functioning and relationships. Each family develops an individualized treatment plan in concert with the Clinical team and treatment team meetings are held at intake, 30 days, 60 days, 90 days, 6 months, 9 months, 1 year, and every 6 months after. Amethyst Place uses a variety of evidence-based therapies and practices to help families better manage their mental health and heal from past trauma. Therapies are provided in individual, family, and group modalities. Specific evidence-based practices include motivational interviewing, trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy, contingency management, relapse prevention, intensive case management, eye movement desensitization and reprocessing, sand tray therapy, and play therapy.

Population(s) Served
Substance abusers

Where we work


Missouri Department of Mental Health Certification 2021


Philly Awards - Silver, Long Form Video 2021

Nonprofit Connect

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

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

Percentage of adults who maintain or regain their recovery while residing at Amethyst Place.

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

Women and girls

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success


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.

Amethyst Place, located in Kansas City’s urban core, has been filling this important role for families in recovery for over 21 years. Our Noble Cause is to inspire transformational healing and empower women and children to achieve recovery, reunification, and resilience. Agency goals are to: 1) reunite, stabilize, and heal families; 2) remove barriers and individualize services to promote sustainable recovery and healthy living; and 3) build capacity of mothers to achieve economic success and overcome generational poverty. We have a campus of 37 supportive housing units that come with access to a network of on-site services designed to achieve these agency goals.

Our services are provided through three program areas:

Supportive Housing: The goal of the Supportive Housing Program is to reunify and stabilize families through 37 apartment units with wraparound supports.

Family Empowerment Program: The goal of the Family Empowerment Program is to help families increase their economic and social mobility through educational, vocational, financial, and wellness support and programming.

Therapeutic Support Program: The goal of the Therapeutic Support Program is to help families heal from past trauma, stabilize mental health, improve parenting skills, and build resilience.

Amethyst Place is the product of Kansas City community leaders banding together to address common issues they were facing across multiple sectors and service systems. In 1989, the Kansas City Metropolitan Task Force on Drug Exposed Infants (later known as the Task Force on Families Affected by Substance Abuse) convened 28 agencies representing health care, child welfare and juvenile justice, alcohol and drug treatment, mental health, early childhood, education, law enforcement, and a host of human service and community agencies advocating for the needs of mothers with substance use disorders and their children. The Task Force was particularly concerned by the high relapse rate among single mothers after they were released from 30-day residential substance use treatment programs. Because of untreated mental illness, significant histories of trauma, poor educational attainment, limited work histories, felonies, evictions, poor credit histories, and lack of safe and affordable housing options, these women had no choice but to return to the same communities where their substance use began, threatening their recovery and the stability of their families. Founded in May 2000 by Task Force members, Amethyst Place has filled this gap for 20 years. Following treatment, mothers now have a safe and supportive environment where they can reunify with children, who are oftentimes in out-of-home placement, and stabilize and heal as a family.

Key Outcomes in 2020: Despite the pandemic, our agency and families achieved the following:
• Overcoming houselessness: We reunited, stabilized, and healed 198 women and children. The average length of stay was 19 months.
• Reunifying families: 100% of children removed from their mom's care were reunified within 60 days of her coming to Amethyst Place.
• Sustaining recovery: 90% of moms in our program maintained their recovery - more than double the national average.

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 shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    women and children experiencing homelessness, substance use, and trauma

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

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Case management notes, Community meetings/Town halls, Constituent (client or resident, etc.) advisory committees, Suggestion box/email,

  • 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?

    We revised our Resident Handbook based on resident feedback

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

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

  • 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 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,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback,


Amethyst Place, Inc.

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


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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Connect with nonprofit leaders


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

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Amethyst Place, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 02/10/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

Ms. Elizabeth Glynn


Term: 2018 - 2022

Board co-chair

Ms. Jaimie Gray

Program graduate/Comprehensive Mental Health Services

Term: 2018 - 2022

Elizabeth Glynn


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Liz Tobin

Ogletree Deak

Jeff Ganaden

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Jaimie Gray

Program Graduate/Comprehensive Mental Health Services

Sara Beth Burton


Oneta Templeton

Children's Mercy

Barbara Washington

MO State Senator, District 9

Yvonne Brewington

Research Medical Center

Penny Clodfelter

Community Volunteer

Michele Kemp

Community Volunteer

Rev. Catherine Stark-Corn

Country Club Christian Church

Angie Smith

Program Graduate

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 10/29/2021

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


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity


Sexual orientation

No data


No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 10/29/2021

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.