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 |  502 N EAST AVE Waukesha WI 53186-5035

Hope Center Inc. is headquartered in Waukesha, WI, and is a 501(c)(3) organization. EIN: 39-1585261.  Donations are tax-deductible. It is classified by the IRS as a Charitable Organization. The IRS ruling year for tax exemption was 1987.

(Source: IRS Business Master File and Form 990)

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Encompass Rating System by Charity Navigator

Charity Navigator’s Encompass Rating System evolves on a quarterly basis as we add new measures and indicators, which we call Beacons. Check back often to see how this organization’s score changes.

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Overall Score

Not Scored

Encompass Scores are calculated from one or more Beacon Scores. This organization is either not eligible for a Beacon (see below), or that Beacon is not yet available.

  • This organization is ineligible for a Finance & Accountability score. Find out why.

  • This organization is ineligible for a Impact & Results score. Find out why.

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...   Finance & Accountability

Charity Navigator evaluates a nonprofit organization’s financial health including measures of stability, efficiency and sustainability. We also track accountability and transparency policies to ensure the good governance and integrity of the organization.

No Score

We have not issued this nonprofit an Finance & Accountability score. This does not indicate a positive or negative assessment, only that we have not reached a conclusion for the following reason:

This organization cannot be evaluated by our Encompass Rating methodology because, as a church, it is not required to file the Form 990.

The lack of a rating for this reason simply means that the organization does not meet our rating criteria. It does not indicate a positive or negative assessment by Charity Navigator.

...   Impact & Results

Charity Navigator assesses how well a nonprofit delivers on its mission. To issue an Impact & Results score, we estimate the actual impact a nonprofit has on the lives of those it serves, and determine whether it is making good use of donor resources to achieve that impact.

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We have not issued this nonprofit an Impact & Results score. This does not indicate a positive or negative assessment, only that we have not reached a conclusion for one of the following reasons:

  • The nonprofit is eligible for a score, but we have not yet gotten to scoring it.

  • The nonprofit is eligible for a score, but we have not yet developed the specific algorithms to estimate the impact of the type of service it delivers and so cannot issue a score yet.

  • The nonprofit does not primarily deliver services directly to beneficiaries or it is not reasonable to expect the nonprofit to measure impact for its primary activity. The impact analysis framework that we use is not well suited to these nonprofits.

  • The nonprofit is not heavily reliant on individual donors because beneficiaries fund a majority of its costs or it does not receive any private charitable contributions.

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Additional Information


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Largest Programs

Largest Programs

No program data is available for this organization.

GuideStar Seal of Transparency


GuideStar is Charity Navigator's trusted partner in sharing information on how this organization seeks impact. GuideStar has recognized this organization with a Gold Seal of Transparency for voluntarily and publicly describing their goals, strategies, and accomplishments. Click here for more information.

Note: GuideStar Seals do not effect the nonprofit’s Impact & Results Score.

What is your organization aiming to accomplish?

Hope Center fills a particular niche within the homeless network in Waukesha County. There is no other community-based organization that addresses the multiple basic needs of men, women, and families by providing, free of charge, food, clothing, and basic household items for those in need. Hope Center coordinates closely with over 120 county-wide congregations, nonprofit organizations, businesses, and governments and accepts guest referrals on an ongoing basis. All programs are provided within Hope Center located at 502 E. Main Street.

What are your strategies for making this happen?

We provide free clothing to over 6000 individuals over the year, along with feeding over 40,000 meals for those in need including the homeless. Also furnish appliance and furniture along with household items to over 400 families yearly. Some financial assistance is provided to help individuals get to and from work (if needed) or to obtain medical services. With limited disposable income those who visit the Clothing Shop can budget their resources for other necessary living items. Adults can receive work and job interview clothing items; children can dress appropriately for school with items provided by the Clothing Shop. The Outreach Meal program provides a warm nutritious meal 4 days per week with a special dining area for families and Project Move delivers basic household furniture and living items. The Day Center program provides a warm breakfast and lunch 5 days a week during the months of May thru October. Between the months of November thru April the Day Center is open 7 days a week serving breakfast as well as lunch and a "warm shelter" during the Wisconsin winter months.

What are your organization's capabilities for doing this?

The mission of the Hope Center has been to minimize the poverty risk factors that contribute to homelessness by providing for the basic needs for clothing, food, and furniture. As established and ongoing programs the following is a brief description of each. All programs and services are free and restricted to residents of Waukesha County who are in low to low-middle income levels. Clothing Shop: In 1989, the Clothing Shop moved from the basement of a local church and became a program of Hope Center. The Clothing Shop provides thousands of people with free quality clothing donated by supporting congregations and individuals. Guests use the Shop to stretch their budgets and cloth their families. We have everyday clothing, school clothing, and a section devoted to career type clothing. Our staff of volunteers assists our guests in selecting clothing. Basic household items and layettes for new mothers are also available. Outreach Meals: This program began in 1991 to address the issue of hunger in our community. Our guests include the homeless, those living in rooming houses or shelters, families trying to “make ends meet", and elderly persons on fixed incomes; many of whom are physically and mentally impaired. Meals are served Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings at Hope Center. We partner with St. Vincent de Paul, Food Pantry of Waukesha County, TEFAP, local restaurants, area congregations, and individuals to offer a hot nutritionally balanced meal three times a week. A major source of funding has been from the Waukesha County Community Development Block Grant. We feed approximately 90-100 men, women, and children at each meal. Cooperating with the Salvation Army, Waukesha residents can receive one hot, fresh, nutritious meal every day of the week. We also make our facility available to Loaves and Fishes for a Sunday meal. Day Center: In conjunction with the Outreach Meal Program Hope Center maintains a Day Center. The Day Center is open Monday through Friday and on weekends during the winter season; November through April. Between May and October the Day Center is open 5 days a week; Monday through Friday. Program hours are 8:00am to 4:00pm. A hearty breakfast and hot lunch are served daily. Job search assistance, medical and social assistance, as well as information and referral services are also available for those who might otherwise be socially isolated and alone. Project Move: Identifying the need for “gently used" appliances, furniture and other household items for people that are relocating from a shelter or temporary housing, this program was re-instituted in June of 2010. Donated items are stored; inventoried; and delivered using Hope Center trucks. The delivery of furniture and household items is an essential element in the success of Project Move. Those in need of furniture and household items are usually unable to transport the items without assistance.

How will your organization know if you are making progress?

The measure of success for each of the 3 programs cited above will be a documented increase in the unduplicated number of guests served by each program. To determine this, Hope Center maintains a computer based participant tracking system that reports duplicated/unduplicated counts; volunteer hours for each program; donations received by each program; and participant demographics by race and ethnicity. On an ongoing basis, all Hope Center programs are evaluated to determine guest satisfaction and to incorporate program enhancements that are suggested and/or proposed. Feedback is gathered from guests, providers, volunteers, and program staff in numerous ways such as regular staff meetings; guest interviews and questionnaires; and direct volunteer feedback. Please refer to the Hope Center website, www.hopecenterwi.org for guest comments.

What have and haven't you accomplished so far?

The constant and ongoing challenge in addressing the issue of homelessness within our community is the relationship between the concept of poverty and the inability of individuals and families to provide or obtain the “basic necessities" of everyday living. Hope Center provides a hand up to those in need by making food, clothing, and furniture available at no cost. In addressing the complex problem of homelessness Hope Center has become a very important and unique part of the collaborative supportive resource network. Hope Center serves the homeless, W-2 participants, the physically and mentally impaired, people in recovery programs, the elderly on a fixed income and low-income families. Hope Center accomplishments for the 2018 program year include the following. 4,407 unduplicated individuals have visited the Clothing Shop 33,529 times. Approximately 39% of all visits were for children. 83,684 articles of clothing were distributed, in addition 8,104 pieces of underwear and 10,019 pairs of socks. 690 unduplicated individuals have visited the evening Meal Program 8,032 times. 12,337 dinners were served Approximately 11% of all visits were for children. 1,112 unduplicated individuals have visited the Day Center 18,606 times. 12,772 breakfasts and 21,128 lunches were served. 626 individuals received Financial Assistance totaling $15,050. 906 households received 4,027 household items; 432 households received 1,441 furniture items; 46 layettes were distributed by Project Move. 1,715 Volunteers have donated a total of 33,854 hours of service to Hope Center program guests. 1,485 Furniture Items; 9,547 Household Items; and 236,406 Clothing Items were donated. $175,976 Retail value of Food Items donated. 626 individuals received Financial Assistance totaling $15,050. 1,485 Furniture Items; 9547 Household Items; and 236,406 Clothing Items were received as donations. The total retail value of food items donated was $175,976.00


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