Homelessness in Harrisburg

Homelessness in Harrisburg in 2019 Panel Discussion

Executive Director Scott Dunwoody, Director of Women’s Mission Shelley Brooks, and Director of Social Services Don Koch discuss current trends in homelessness in Harrisburg, including what’s going on in each specific area of ministry and how the trends affect their approach to ministry.

Stages of Homelessness

At Bethesda Mission we work with people experiencing different degrees of homelessness, known as “stages.”

Stage 1 – Marginal

  • People who live near or below poverty line
  • Rely on relatives and friends for accommodation
  • Use services provided for homeless people

Bethesda Mission Food Bank, Community Center, Medical & Dental Clinics

Stage 2 – Recently Homeless

  • Without a home for a few months
  • Still see situation as temporary
  • Do not consider themselves homeless

Men’s Mission, Women’s Mission, Medical & Dental Clinics

Stage 3 – Chronic Homelessness

  • Without a home for a year or more
  • Accept their life on the streets as the norm
  • Become suspicious and distrustful, demoralized, isolated, lose self-respect and identity

Men’s Mission, Mobile Mission, Medical & Dental Clinics


Point in Time Survey

Conducted by the Capital Area Coalition on Homelessness (CACH), this survey of homeless persons in our city is taken every year in January to help provide data and information regarding the state of homelessness in Harrisburg.

Click here to read more.


If you would like to learn more, consider coming for a tour.