Community Connections for a Better Tomorrow

IPH, the non-profit organization formerly known as the Interfaith Partnership for the Homeless, has been serving the needs of the homeless community in Albany and surrounding areas in the Capital Region for more than 35 years.  
Without straying from its original mission, and with the help of supporters like SEFCU, IPH is a key organization that collaborates with community partners to provide shelter, day habilitation, access to healthcare and food for individuals struggling with homelessness, rapid rehousing, and short-term housing solutions.

SEFCU employees standing around a table full of household products
Photo taken in 2019

This month, SEFCU was proud to provide a $30,000 investment to ensure that IPH can continue to serve 60,000+ meals annually to individuals staying in their shelters.  

Founded in 1984, IPH began as a provider of emergency shelter for single adults, IPH has expanded its non-denominational programming to include a continuum of services that assist more than 2,500 homeless and at-risk individuals and families each year.  IPH promotes life skills development and self-sufficiency. 

Beyond feeding hungry individuals, this recent funding from SEFCU’s Community Support Program will also support the great partnerships IPH has established to serve more people in need. Within the last year, IPH streamlined processes and has taken over an emergency shelter previously run by St. Peter's Hospital. The 11-bed shelter provides emergency shelter, meals, and case management to chronically homeless adults. IPH also this year acquired a building located at 35 South Ferry Street in Albany. The building was formerly a youth shelter run by Equinox. IPH will be moving its Medical Respite into the building and serving 17 chronically homeless individuals each night who have been released from the hospital to recover from illness or surgery. These are all examples of ways in which IPH has worked to provide services to the multi-faceted needs of the clients who turn to them for help.  

“With SEFCU’s recent support, IPH can continue to make logical and strategic community connections,” said Chief Community Officer Kathy Lanni. “The organization forged ahead with meaningful partnerships with St. Peter’s Hospital and Equinox, all while meeting the needs of homeless individuals during the COVID-19 pandemic when there was a huge increase in clients needing their services.” 

In part, the leaders at IPH attribute their drive to partner to the instructions of SEFCU to think outside of the box and collaborate and consolidate programming to have a streamlined approach.

"What comes with IPH’s partnership with SEFCU is volunteerism, financial support, basic necessities for vulnerable emergency shelter guests and thought provoking conversations," wrote Janine Robitaille, the Executive Director of IPH. "Our time spent with SEFCU Leaders has inspired IPH to become a trail blazer in helping homeless and low income neighbors. The SEFCU Team is a strong and creative one. One that has been partnering and growing with IPH for over 14 years."

While the investment of $30,000 comes from SEFCU’s Community Support Program which is derived from 20% of our net income each year, changing lives every day is not just about funding grants. SEFCU’s staff are a big part of the support we send to IPH through Giving For Good donations which fund initiatives to support IPH like Code Blue and the Summer Needs Assessments.  

“I am super proud of the way SEFCU’s Community Support Program funds, our staff and members’ individual donations, and our volunteerism has made an impact to help those served by IPH,” said Lanni. “I hope everyone at our organization can take pride in this partnership and pat themselves on the back for stepping up for others in their time of need.”