Women’s Mission Renewal Project

5/21/20 Update: Our new total raised is $3,803,577! Thank you for your support so far.

It’s time for Renewal!

“I came to the Women’s Mission broken, after several overdoses and mental health challenges. My time here has helped me learn how to love myself, love others, and love God. I was hopeless, and being here gave me hope. They provided stability for me and encouraged me to better my life.” — Lonny

Every month we see new women seeking help at our shelter, but we also have an ongoing waiting list. Almost all of the women have been victims of abuse, but with the help of our staff, they leave with a new relationship with God and a promising future.

We have begun raising funds to expand our Women’s Shelter from the present capacity of 25 to accommodate 50+ women and children. We are replacing our old, worn out buildings with a new 18,400 square feet building. This project is estimated to cost $4.2 million. We have been blessed with an $875,000 estate gift, $1.25 million in foundations, business grants, churches and individuals, and a $1.5 million Federal Home Bank Program grant. In addition to those amounts, we will still need to raise another $600,000.

After funding is secured, the Transitional Living building will be demolished and the new Women’s Shelter will be built on that footprint. Once the new shelter is completed, the women and children will be relocated into that facility and then the Main Shelter will be demolished, followed by creating the outdoor improvements. We envision the entire project being completed by fall 2021.


The Vision

Out of two old school buildings, 37 years ago in 1983, Bethesda Mission opened a Women’s Shelter located a mile directly east of the State Capitol Complex in the City of Harrisburg. Its vison began, and continues, to offer women in crisis help, hope, and healing through Jesus Christ in a safe, trustworthy, and loving environment.

That vision will expand with a renewal of this site, continuing to offer long term recovery and transitional living, but also adding some emergency shelter beds and a safe haven for 18-24 year-old women whose lives are not derailed by addiction or unwanted pregnancy, but have nowhere else to go.

In our July 2017 Newsletter, the inspirational story titled God, the Girl, and the Old Building is told by Shelley Brooks,

God, the Girl, and the Old Building

“As we prepare for the new building, I thought I’d share my connection with this 100-plus-year-old building that God has used to love, heal, save, and provide refuge for thousands of women and children since May 6, 1983.”

Director of the Women’s Mission. Recounting being led by God to serve hurting women for 35 years, these very old buildings have provided shelter for refuge, reconciliation, restoration, and HOPE for a lot of women, including Shelley.

Wait upon the Lord, with faith, patience, trust, and perseverance and He will bring what is for YOU, to YOU! For Shelley, it was to witness Jesus’ love in big old buildings that have served their community well.

You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. (Jeremiah 29:13)

The Renewal/The Expansion

  • God and the Girl will remain, but the 120- year-old former school buildings have got to go, demolished! (infeasible to renovate)
  • For 37 years we’ve been rescuing and restoring women’s lives in the community of Harrisburg; reaching 25+ women, some with younger kids, annually
  • Searched for 5 years to find larger site to renovate or build new, but zoning restrictions and purchase price were prohibitive, so in December, 2017 we decided to “stay home” on existing site
  • This half acre site will be totally renewed with a brand new 18,400 sf 4 story shelter, housing 51 beds, up from our existing capacity of 25 beds
  • Outdoor space will include vegetable and flower gardens, prayer and meditation areas, play areas for children, grass and trees, security fencing and landscaped buffer, off street parking

Our staff have done wonderful job with functionally deficient facility, ministering so effectively for many years…


It’s high time for renewal!


Project Cost

Over the past 2 years, we have been laying a financial foundation for the project. Behind the scenes, we’ve already raised $3.6M. This means we are 85% of the way to our goal—Praise God!

Now it’s your turn. We are opening the public fundraising phase for this Campaign. We need $500,000 more to make this Staying Home Renewal & Expansion a reality.


Project Costs                                                    

Demolish Existing Buildings                                                    $64,240

Excavation, Site Work, Environmental Remediation,
Landscaping, Outdoor Amenities                                               $   414,400

Construct New Shelter                                                                  $3,488,787

Architect/Engineer/FHLB Fees                                                  $   275,000

                                               Total Cost                                  $4,242,427

Funds Raised

Estate Gift                                                                                            $   875,000

Foundations, Business Grants, Churches, Individuals               $1,428,577

FHLB (Bank Grant Funding Program)                                $1,500,000

Total Raised                                $3,803,577


Remaining Need$438,850 Building Costs
plus $100,000 Equipment & Operating Funds

our goal

Please contact Cindy Mallow, Director of Development, with any questions: 717-257-4442 x233 or cmallow@bethesdamission.org.

Ways to Give

  • Cash & publicly traded securities
  • Real estate valued at actual proceeds realized
  • Current cash value of life insurance policies where Bethesda Mission becomes owner/beneficiary of policy
  • Estate gifts under wills and trusts paid or in process

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good, pleasing, and perfect will.” Romans 12:1, 2 (NIV)

Did You Miss Our Virtual Banquet Program?You still have time to watch!

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we held our Annual Banquet in a virtual format this year. Please watch as we celebrate the ways hope is bursting forth in people’s lives through God’s work at Bethesda Mission. Highlights include Volunteer of the Year Award, updates on building projects, and testimonies from our Men's Mission, Women's Mission, and Community Center.