IHS, THE INSTITUTE FOR HUMAN SERVICES, INC

Rating: 5 stars   14 reviews

Issues: Homeless & Housing

Location: 546 Kaaahi St Honolulu HI 96817 USA

Mission: IHS, The Institute for Human Services, Inc., is a comprehensive social services agency working to prevent and end homelessness in Hawaii. We are a 501(C)3 – a private, non-profit organization, that is solution oriented and positive outcome-driven. Our mission is to provide “respite for those who are unsheltered and solutions that transform the lives of homeless and at-risk people.” Our vision is ”a community where everyone has a right to, and responsibility for safe, decent, and affordable housing.”
Results: In FY2012, we served over 5,000 people in at least one or more programs, helped prevent homelessness for 401 households (1,232 individuals) and assisted 516 households move from homelessness into stable housing (779 individuals).
Programs: While IHS is known for providing emergency shelter and food to the homeless and those most in need, we do far more through our array of eight services: Emergency Shelter and Services, Case Management, Community Food Programs, Children’s Enrichment Services, Outreach, Housing Placement Services, Pre-vocational and Employment Services, Health Services

2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

IHS is doing an outstanding job helping the those in need and encouraging others to help. They are very oraganized, passionate, yet humble about their work.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I was feeling overwhelmed and helpless because of all the injustices and problems in the world. Volunteering with IHS is helping me to make a positive and meaningful difference in the world.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

If I had lots of money, I would remodel the kitchen to make it more user-friendly and open up the diningroom so that more people can come sit and eat.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

IHS has helped so many in the community, not only the homeless, but also people who want to do something to help them. They were very gracious in encouraging and accepting Halloween goody bags from my son's class for the children served by IHS. Their staff member, Kate Bepko came to the school to personally thank the children and help educate them about IHS and the good they do.

They also graciously accepted our donations of candy immediately after Halloween and toiletry items. Our school donated over 90 pounds of candy and a couple boxes of toiletry items.

They do a great job of treating the people they serve with dignity and inspiring others in the community to help.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Interfacing with a group of donors and the IHS staff. Gathering donations and arranging for the IHS people to educate my son's class.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Increase community awareness by doing more public education in schools.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I feel very fortunate in how things have turned out in my life. I look around and see the homeless population in Hawaii grow every day. The Institute for Human Resources attacks this problem head one and with compassion. I've been to their shelters. I've seen how much they do with the little they have. It's not much, but I organize an event every five years or so to bring to light what we can do together to give back to the community. The latest event in 2010 was called "Towels and Toiletries". It is a hard economy for everyone, but my associates at work were able to collect over a dozen boxes of well needed items on IHS's wish list. Items we often take for granted. The event was fun, and it felt good giving. I chose the Institute for Human Resources as my charity of choice because their help to those in Hawaii that are not as fortunate as me is tangible. It is the one charity dedicated to helping homeless men, women, many children, and families, keep their hope alive.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Seeing that an individual can make a difference in other peoples' lives through simple donations.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I wish IHS was bigger, had more backing. The homeless situation in Hawaii is just to big for their organization's resources and size.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

IHS is a wonderful organization and a major player in the fight to end homelessness in Hawaii. They offer so many services to their guests, and serves as an example for other organizations all over the country in its willingness to pursue innovative programs to meet the needs of the homeless. IHS' urban farming initiative is especially commendable, as well as the willingness of the staff to work with other organizations all over Hawaii.

Not only does IHS help its guests with temporary housing and assistance, it also offers the local community a change to engage with the people affected by homelessness. This is so important because it allows everyone to become involved in solving a issue that can be prevented through community effort.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

watching families, friends, and various organizations gather resources to help other local families in need. I met and talked with a family who used IHS programs to get themselves out of the shelter and into a home.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

volunteer here all the time. Unfortunately, I am no longer in Hawaii, but I wholeheartedly support IHS' efforts from afar.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

For those unaware of the situation here in Hawai`i homelessness has grown to a problem of epic proportions.

The reason we donate to the Institute for Human Services here in Honolulu is that they are not a "warehouse" for the homeless. Rather, in addition to providing shelter they provide services that help their guests to get back on their feet and into permanent housing. The Institute also helps persons who are in danger of becoming homeless. Children receive school supplies and have a place in the center where they can do homework.

The center also has grows vegetables to serve to its guests, becoming a part of the green movement here in the Islands. The programs at IHS not only provide sustenance for their guests, they also provide a model for good citizenship.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

We have toured the facility.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Additional privacy for guests when your funding permits.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

IHS is doing a wonderful service for those in need. I am glad to be part of such a wonderful organization. I see what little resources they have to work with, but they make sure all guests are cared for.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Organizing donations and food preparation.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Hope for more donations!

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Review from Guidestar
Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

IHS does so much with so little! It is great to witness how far they can stretch a dollar and still give so much to the community. Not only do they shelter and feed the homeless, but, they also work hard to keep those that are housed from becoming homeless again. Their support also extends to education on how to manage finances and good nutrition. They are also able to harness wide-spread community support for volunteers, they are an invaluable asset to Oahu.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in witnessing their sheltering, feeding, and caring for families and individuals who are homeless. I've also had neighbors who have been given "a leg up" by IHS with help in finding housing and mental health services.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would give them additional shelter sites and staffing to cope with the number of homeless on the island who are currently turned away.

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

IHS is a spectacular homeless shelter. Not only does it provide shelter for the homeless, it offers a variety of beneficial programs for the homeless children including Teen Group, Homework Club, and Head Start (a program geared towards toddlers). These programs really assist the kids at the shelter, as it relieves them of stress from school as well as family. At programs such as Homework Club, they interact with their fellow peers happily and learn respect, responsibility, and discipline, all the while having fun. For example, they are expected to complete as much homework as they can during the two hour time frame. If they do not have homework, they are allowed to do various other activities, such as playing a board game. As a current tutor at Homework Club, I personally witness the progression of these wonderful kids on a weekly basis.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

observing the children's advancements in responsibility and respect for one another. They learn to work together while carrying out fun projects i.e. painting coconut shells for the garden, picking up trash as part of being "litter detectives."

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

give them more money and space for additional programs.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

In my role as the adviser for a high school club that does community service projects, I have participated (along with the students) in several volunteer workdays at IHS over the past 5-6 years: sorting donated clothes & household items, cleaning, and serving meals. As the primary homeless shelter in urban Honolulu, IHS provides a critical service to the city's homeless population. As well as providing bed space in their two shelters (one for men & one for women/families), they provide case management and various types of services to help people get back on their feet. I love their recent initiative of growing vegetables & fruit trees in all the available bits of land around the edge of the shelter!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

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If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

Throughout my life, I have donated to various charities for no particular reason save for the fact that I had received some form of solicitation. A number of years ago, I began to pay attention to the plight of the homeless in Hawaii. The problem is readily apparent. In looking at the various entities that addressed the issues and problems of the homeless, I found that the name of the Institute for Human Services came up repeatedly. I looked into its history, its background, and its operations. Needless to say I was very impressed. From that point forward, I became a regular donor. As a recent retiree, I began to take a closs look at my needs and what I could spare. As a result, I have increased my donations to the IHS because I trully believe in what they are doing and their mission. As time goes on, I suspect that I will increase my contributions further.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have had no direct personal experience with this organixation.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would not make any changes to this organization.

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Review from Guidestar