Understanding that unfortunately many shelters have no choice but to prioritize operational and program expenses above aesthetics, Open Your Heart recently released a Special Request for Proposals focused on projects designed to improve and enhance the experience of unhoused families, youth, and single adults. Through this funding, the goal is to support organizations in aesthetically enhancing their shelter space to create a more welcoming, safe, and dignified environment. 

Grant Partners

Face to Face Health & Counseling Service, Inc.
Funding to commission local BIPOC artists to collaboratively create art to be displayed at their day shelter and clinic. The art will feature the BIPOC youth they work with and diverse ranges of beauty, culture, and identities. 

Family Rise Together
Toward furnishings that are culturally geared towards BIPOC communities that they serve, creating an inclusive and welcoming space that brings them back to their heritage.

Oasis for Youth
Project funds will be used to make updates to the space, making it more trauma informed and youth-centered, based on feedback from youth served. This will include updating lighting, purchasing furniture for quiet spaces for youth, and adding youth-commissioned artwork to the space.

People Serving People
This outdoor revitalization and beautification project will include the replacement of their outdoor benches where parents gather while waiting for their children’s buses to arrive, the purchase and installation of a four-season gazebo with lighting so parents and kids can sit in the shade in the summer, or in a safely lit space out of the snow in the winter.

Relationship Safety Alliance f.k.a. Mid-Minnesota Women’s Center, Inc.
Replacing old, cracked, and broken flooring at the Louise Seliski Shelter and the Alex & Brandon Child Safety Center will positively impact shelter residents, visitors, and visiting families at the Child Safety Center. They will correct safety concerns of tripping on cracked linoleum and tiles in hallway and entry ways and address possible mold under carpeting.

Ruth’s House of Hope
This funding will support the enhancement of the outdoor space at their sober living home, Sarah’s House, in Northfield. Currently there’s no space for the women who are recovering from substance abuse to spend time outside in a supportive and comfortable space. This project entails the purchase of patio furniture, a dining table and stools, Adirondack chairs, an end table, and a planter with gardening supplies for creating a garden.

Servants of Shelter of Koochiching County
The exterior paint project will help maintain the building integrity, neighborhood support, and most importantly maintain the quality housing that they strive to provide for shelter guests. The interior welcome mural will provide a beautiful and inclusive aesthetic for guests, many of which are experiencing elevated forms of trauma. A safe, clean, warm, beautiful space is essential for the healing of the traumas associated with housing insecurity and this project will add to efforts to produce both the spaces and support services to provide that sanctuary.

Southern MN Crisis Nursery
Funding to replace their current front door, paint/wall art/new furniture for three kids’ rooms & new security cameras. All of these updates will make the shelter look better and feel safer and more welcoming.

Tubman
Funds will be used to add art pieces to common areas of each floor of the shelter to complement the recent interior design refresh. Tubman’s shelter advisory committee made up of current clients will help make decisions on artwork that will be displayed. In choosing works, they will support local artists, particularly those who are BIPOC survivors of domestic violence.