Our sole purpose as a Minnesota-based 501(c)3 non-profit is to outfit individuals experiencing homelessness or housing instability, who have found new jobs, with the specific things that they need to start back to work. We believe gainful employment is a key factor in helping individuals secure and maintain stable housing. With our practical and timely assistance, that few other agencies provide, we help remove obstacles that often prevent workers from being able to take a job – like required work clothes and work shoes, trade tools, professional licenses or union dues, and an unlimited 31-day bus pass so they have a reliable way to get to work everyday for an entire month.
To outfit individuals experiencing homelessness with the required work items they need to start a new job.
To remove the obstacles individuals experiencing homelessness face when employment opportunities arise.
We strive to ensure that every applicant that walks through our doors is seen as a human being with potential.
We provide the necessary work items and transportation support needed for our clients to show up ready to succeed.
Gainful employment is a key factor in helping individuals secure and maintain stable housing, stability and independence.
Last year we surpassed 6,000 clients served by Small Sums to date.
Back in 2005 a group of local volunteers and philanthropists who had been active in the community came together with an idea. Having history working alongside folks experiencing homelessness or housing instability and hearing about their biggest struggles, they came to understand that those who had the drive and determination to work often faced a huge obstacle:
They were able to find the job and get hired, but coming up with the work tools, uniform or proper footwear was a challenge that brought stress, anxiety and doubt.
They decided to take action and that’s when Small Sums was founded. They knew then, and we still know now, that employment is a critical part of acquiring and maintaining stable housing and that often a “small sum” is all that’s needed to help someone on their journey out of homelessness.
Our programs have evolved over the years to meet the changing needs of those experiencing homelessness and since the pandemic hit, we’re now including those in unstable housing. One thing remains the same: Our goal is to foster self-sufficiency among new workers in need of stable housing.
With a successful structure in place, a track record of good managed growth, and a great success rate for clients who are helped by Small Sums, we know we will be back to full force in no time. Our goal is to serve over 700 clients in 2022 as we aid efforts toward economic recovery and rebuilding of the Twin Cities. At Small Sums, we are good at what we do, and are a critical part of the solution to help people and families on their path to stable housing, and relieve the stress that comes with being unhoused.
With our practical and timely assistance that few other agencies provide, we help remove obstacles that often prevent workers from being able to take a job. Clients hear about us by word of mouth or are referred to us by other organizations. After a quick intake over the phone, and after their employment is verified, we are able to schedule clients within 1-2 business days. No long waits, no piles of paperwork. Just quick assistance that helps workers who need help quickly.
We are not able to do this work without our community of organizations and individuals. Here is a special thanks to our supporters for their generosity.
Homelessness is not something we can tackle alone. We need your support.