FAQ

1. How many beds does the Shelter have?

BAHS has 38 beds year-round, and in the winter, we will open up “overflow” beds in the TV room to keep up with the demand for shelter.

2. When did the Shelter first open?

On Christmas Eve in 1986. Read about our history.

3. What is your main goal in providing the services that you do?

We believe in the principle that safe, affordable housing is a fundamental human right and our primary aim is to offer a stabilizing base and support for homeless men and women as they transition back into the community. We believe that services offered should actively involve those in need of assistance, be of high quality and be delivered with dignity and respect. Our concern is for both emergency care and the development of affordable housing for all.

4. What are the requirements to stay at the Shelter?

Anyone seeking shelter at BAHS must first meet with staff in person and complete an initial intake. Beds are not reserved over the phone, and we act on a first come first served basis. We can only accept people 18 years of age or older. Guest at BAHS must be clean and sober from drugs or alcohol.

5. How long can someone stay at the Shelter?

Each length of stay is different. As long as someone is following rules and working hard every day on their plan of care, there is no set length of stay. Individuals are dealt with on a case by case basis

6. Where does your funding come from?

Just 29% of our funding comes from State and Federal programs, the rest comes from grants & foundations, private contributions, and fundraisers.

7. What common biases does the public have about the homeless shelter?

Common misconceptions are that people who are homeless are deadbeats and don’t want to work or just want to live off public assistance.  In fact, quite a few of our shelter guests have jobs and/or are looking for work.

8. What are some misconceptions you’d like to clear up?

The majority of homeless individuals are folks who have mental health and/or substance abuse issues.  Quite often mental health issues lead to substance abuse as individuals seek to self-medicate rather than seeking professional help; often because they don’t recognize that they have a treatable problem, or they don’t have medical coverage and can’t afford care.

9. What is one thing you would like the general public to know about the work you do?

That many of us in today’s world live and work just a few paychecks away from a crisis.  The people we serve are just like many of the people we know and love.  Anyone can become homeless if they lose a job or have a medical crisis without friends and/or family support to fall back on.  Anyone can fall into the snare of substance abuse or mental health issues just as easily and quickly as the next person regardless of background and education.

10. What is the criteria to access BAHS food pantry?

Food Pantry is every Tuesday and Thursday from 1pm-4pm. Individuals are allowed access to our pantry once a month. You will speak with a staff/volunteer when you arrive, and they will need basic information such as your name, address and number of people in your household.

11. How do I become a volunteer for BAHS?

Interested volunteers can fill our volunteer application. We receive many inquiries for volunteers and while we cannot accommodate every request, we do our best to give as many people as we can an opportunity to donate their time. More information on volunteer opportunities.

Do you have a question for Bangor Area Homeless Shelter? Feel free to contact us and we will do our best to get you the information you are looking for!