Homelessness and Mental Health Services

Homelessness and Mental Health Services

In partnership with the Chicago Alliance to End Homelessness, we support programs that help identify homeless people with mental illness and we work to provide:

  • Housing
  • Social support services
  • Medical and mental healthcare

Access to services

Northwestern Memorial Hospital provides access to a wide range of services for those with mental illness and a dual diagnosis of mental illness and substance abuse.

In addition to traditional individual and group clinical therapies, Northwestern Memorial Hospital works with the Chicago Alliance to End Homelessness through programs aimed at identifying homeless people with mental illness and providing housing, social support services, and medical and mental healthcare.

Northwestern Memorial Hospital supplements state funding to provide short-term housing and support to patients who are homeless and experiencing acute psychiatric symptoms. In addition, we provide on-site support services for homeless individuals diagnosed with a mental illness, including:

  • Medication management
  • Counseling
  • Skills training
  • Housing
  • Help Ease Local Poverty (HELP)

Northwestern Memorial Hospital mental healthcare personnel reach members of the community in need of mental health services through HELP (Help Ease Local Poverty), which is an initiative of the Jane Addams Hull House.

HELP provides meals to the homeless, and in this setting, Northwestern Memorial Hospital employees can serve a weekly meal and reach homeless people in need of mental health services who are not likely to find their way into the healthcare system.

Northwestern Memorial Hospital also provides programs that help patients with moderate to profound mental illness:

  • Live as independently as possible
  • Receive training in good job habits
  • Find volunteer experiences or employment (for example, patients recovering from mental illness often volunteer alongside Northwestern Memorial Hospital employees at HELP dinners for the homeless)

Support groups

Northwestern Memorial Hospital hosts a support group of the Illinois chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness and provides educational presentations to parents and siblings of adults with serious mental illness. We also sponsor a DDRA chapter (Dual Diagnosis Recovery Anonymous).