Family Shelter

YWCA Madison shelter provides housing to families with minor children who are experiencing homelessness. One floor of our downtown housing location features private shelter rooms and a shared kitchen. A YWCA Case Manager supports each family to help them find housing and to prevent future episodes of homelessness.

Families cannot apply directly to the YWCA for shelter. Instead, they should contact The Salvation Army at 1 (608) 250-2298 for family shelter access.

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Accessing Family Shelter

Call The Salvation Army at 1 (608) 250-2298 to access emergency family shelter. The Salvation Army serves as the point of entry for families seeking shelter. Their staff will assess the family’s need and place them on a priority list for shelter. Families are placed at YWCA Madison when rooms become available.

Families cannot apply directly to YWCA Madison for shelter.

Individuals with a minor child are eligible to stay in the family shelter. Additional assessments and qualifications will be screened for.

(Signed agreement to the following rules will be required.)

The maximum stay at the YWCA is 90 days.

  1. Verbal, written, or violent threats or physical abuse/harassment of any individual
    including staff members. Disturbing the peace, disorderly conduct, loud and/or
    abusive language, including racist remarks or other derogatory remarks aimed at a
    group or class of people. This includes spanking or hitting a child.
  2. Stealing.
  3. No alcohol or illegal substances or weapons are allowed on the YWCA shelter floor. Please do not participate in illegal activities on the YWCA premises while staying at the YWCA.
  4. Failure to maintain appropriate personal hygiene and/or appropriate cleanliness in rooms and/or common areas.
    This includes:
    (a) Failure to complete chores on your scheduled day
    (b) Failure to pass room checks
    (c) Failure to return cleaned pots and pans within 24 hours
  5. Bringing any guest to the floor. You may visit in the lobby area for up to 15 minutes and are responsible for the behavior of your guests. We also do not allow animals on the shelter floor (except for service/companion animals).
  6. Failure to accept responsibility for yourself or the children in your care.
    Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
    (a) Keeping appointments with your case manager.
    (b) Making and following through with housing plans.
    (c) Following through with appointments at the Dane County Job Center.
    (d) Maintaining your child’s engagement in school.
    (e) Taking care of health needs for yourself and your family.
    (f) Supervising your children while they are in the shelter.
    (g) Making childcare arrangements according to YWCA policies.
    Abiding by the YWCA’s room key policy.
  7. Creating a fire hazard. Smoking on the second floor, in the elevators or in the lobby area. This includes failure to exit during fire alarms, careless use of the kitchen (such as leaving food unattended), cooking in your room, or activating fire alarm or sprinkler system in a non-emergency situation. For safety reasons, we do not allow candles or incense on the 2nd floor.
  8. Failure to use your room. You and your family are expected to use your room every night. Exceptions are made only through your case manager. If you are staying elsewhere, it will be assumed that you do not need shelter, and your belongings will be packed up and discarded. This is a shelter for families with children. Except with prior approval, adults may not stay in the shelter without their children.
  9. Failure to observe posted building rules stated here, in any handbook or in the Dane County Systems handouts.
  10. Being on other floors when not attending a program, without a guest pass or without prior staff approval.