Bell Family Shelter – emergency help for unhoused families

Bell Family Shelter opened in 1986 and has since served thousands of unhoused York County families with 30-day emergency shelter.  [ call directly at 717-845-9536]

With a recent relocation to a new building at 724 S. George Street, York, the number of bedrooms increased from 11 to 17. This will eventually allow the Shelter to double its current capacity to 70 people* per night, providing basic needs for food, clothing and shelter.

When families arrive at the Shelter doorstep they often require more than just a safe place to sleep for the night. Throughout their stay they meet with staff to build a personalized family goal plan to help them regain and maintain independent living in the community.

Since many of the families are homeless because of insufficient income, job loss or poor housing conditions they receive intensive guidance sessions, workshops and classes to learn budgeting and parenting skills, assistance to secure permanent housing and job placement, and access to a network of community resources.

*About half the number of residents at any given time are under the age of 12.


Working with Shelter staff, many families secure housing in fewer than 20 days. Many of the families utilizing the Shelter never need to access emergency housing again.

The Shelter is open  365 days/nights a year and accepts drug-free couples or single parents with children, couples in long-standing relationships, and single women who have been residents of York County for at least 60 days.

How can you help?


Consider an ADOPT-A-DAY contribution or check out OUR WISHLIST and organize a gathering of in-kind donations, or share your time as a VOLUNTEER.

Our Community Engagement staff will cheerfully welcome your involvement.

For questions about Adopt-a-Days, scheduling a tour, monthly giving, Qualified Charitable Distributions, endowment or legacy giving, reach out to Averie Clark at 717-848-5767, ext. 1505.

Contact Outreach Coordinator, Janel Fox, to talk about volunteer opportunities, confirm wish list needs and make arrangements to host a collection drive. Her number is 717-848-5767, ,ext. 1515.

Interested in our fundraising campaign for the new Bell Family Shelter? Connect with Philanthropy Officer, Peggy Davidson, at 717-848-5767, ext. 1516.

If you’re looking for brochures or stories to share info about Bell with your family, friends, church, work, or civic group, Communications Coordinator Melissa Manning can help. She can be reached at 717-848-5767, ext. 1521.