Please consider volunteering to help support homeless families in our community by providing or preparing food, or supervising kids activities  as an Alpha House volunteer. This is a great opportunity to join together to help others.
You can also help by contributing items that help Alpha House support families during the year. Alpha House Current Wish List.

Cold/ Flu/ COVID-19 Update, November 2020

So far, Alpha House has not seen any cases of COVID-19. Alpha House is implementing preparedness measures in case a coronavirus illness occurs in the shelter. All volunteers are asked to wash hands when arriving and before leaving the shelter. Families are being educated about prevention methods. If there is an illness, sick children will be kept out of activity time and sick families will be served meals in their rooms.

Volunteers: Volunteers can opt to provide contact-free help by dropping off food to Alpha House staff curbside or by donating money to pay for groceries. Your day host will coordinate by phone if last-minute changes are needed. If you or your family is sick, contact your coordinator at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to let her know you will be staying home.

Food donors: You can drive up outside and call 734.822.0220 for Alpha House staff to come out and receive your dish.

Background checks: We ask everyone 18+ who signs up to volunteer with residents (activity time and dinner/brunch servers) to provide full legal name and any former name(s) including maiden name because the Alpha House staff does a simple security check. We need to ask this every time, as the checks are made before each host week.

This host week we need $540 in donations. For nights when volunteers are not bringing dishes for the meals, we will purchase prepared foods from Food Gatherers to serve for dinners. On the signup, you will see opportunities to sponsor a dinner ($20) or sponsor a specific supply for our supply run ($1-$20). Donations may be made by credit card using this link to the UUAA credit card payment page.  THANK YOU!

Questions? Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..



Non-virus season information for volunteers

Children: 1 or 2 children attending a volunteer slot with an adult are welcome! Alpha House kids especially love meeting other kids during Activity Time. We no longer need to know the children's names or ages. If you plan to volunteer with a lot of kids, please let us know.

Background Checks: When you sign up, there will be a question asking for any adult's full name and/or former name. This applies to everyone who interacts with residents (dinner/brunch servers, activity time). For these slots we must provide our full legal names including any former legal names (such as a maiden name or birth name). When arriving for your slot (everyone except cooks), check in at the front desk where the staff will confirm you have had a background check, or they will complete it on the spot.

Dinner Schedules: Sometimes Alpha House parents work late, so you might not see as many people at dinnertime (or have as many kids at weeknight activity time). Our food is needed because residents are reheating the food from the dining room refrigerator later that night.

Cooks/Dinner: You can find the number of adults and kids, any food allergies, and a list of favorite meals here: ( You can see the meals served recently here: ( Questions? Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..




alphahousesignHomelessness is a profound and growing problem for our nation. Today, America is confronted with a homeless population whose magnitude could once have been caused only by a major economic depression. Hundreds of thousands of Americans – children and adults – have no place to call home.

Today’s homeless population is very diverse and goes beyond the stereotypes of the past. A large segment of this growth in homelessness includes families. Over half of the homeless are women and children.

More than any another group, a family’s life is turned upside down and can be virtually destroyed if the family stays homeless very long. Victims of eviction, urban renewal, unemployment or family breakup, members of this vulnerable group have suffered most from a lack of decent affordable housing.

UUAA Outreach to Area Homeless Families

We participate as one of the network congregations that provides meals and other support for three to five families (up to approximately 16 people) for one week on a rotating schedule. We have been hosting IHN 3 - 4 times a year. The families stay at Alpha House, located at 4290 Jackson Rd., near the intersection of Jackson and Wagner. The phone number for Alpha House is 734-822-0220.

We usually obtain over one hundred volunteers from our congregation through the year.

We have an IHN committee that works behind the scenes to coordinate all of the volunteers and other miscellaneous tasks that must be completed in order to make this happen.

How You Can Help

The three Sundays before our hosting week we have a table set up in the Social Hall after church for volunteers (that's you) to sign up to help!

You can:

  • Bring in food/dry goods items. Ex. Milk, cereal, paper napkins, etc.
  • Bring in specific dinner items. Ex. Salad, meat dish, dessert, etc.
  • Help set up dinner.
  • Eat dinner with the families.
  • Help transport food and supplies.
  • Volunteer to sleep overnight.
  • Host on Saturday/Sunday for 2-3 hour shifts

IHN Is Structured to serve families. It provides:

Humane Shelter

      Overnight lodging and meals in private, safe, healthy, "home-like" accommodations.

Short Lead Time

      Use of existing facilities eliminates time spent buying and renovating a building; it takes only a few months to put together a Network program.

Cost Efficiency

      Operating cost reduced by using existing community resources.

Support Services

      Direct involvement often motivates volunteers to play an important role in providing additional support services for families.

Provisional Shelter

      Network program does not institutionalize shelter as a permanent solution. It is not a substitute for affordable housing initiatives.

Catalyst for Change

      Network volunteers and congregations are motivated to develop more permanent solutions for homelessness.

Social Concern Ministry

    Churches and synagogues experience ownership of the program as their outreach ministry to the homeless.

Think globally and act locally. It feels good and you can have fun too!

Read more about efforts to fight homelessness in our community at the web site for the  Shelter Association of Washtenaw County.