The Business of St. Lawrence Place

Posted by: Lila Anna Sauls

I run a non-profit.  I am a CEO. Today I am dressed in business attire, and walked down Main Street with a purpose…securing support and funding for the programs at St. Lawrence Place.

When I arrived back at the office, a plumber greeted me.  He assured me the 20 hot water heaters we’re replacing would be in over the next few weeks, without much disruption to our families.  The landscapers completed the courtyard, and the contractors for Live Oak Place next door walked over to ask a question about parking.

9.23 progress on LOP

Progress on Live Oak Place!

Here’s my point:  St. Lawrence Place is a business.  We pay for services, we pay for staff, we pay for the gas that goes in the children’s bus. We budget…wisely. We deliberately and thoughtfully secure funds through a diversified funding base that includes appeals, events, grants, gifts and fees for services.  Take a moment…when’ s the last time you heard us say we were going to “close our doors” or “serve less people?”

In fact, as the demand for our services has increased, we’ve continued to meet the challenge:  we stay at 100% capacity with a waiting list, and have begun work on Live Oak Place as a response to the need for affordable housing for our graduates and other low income families.

Administrative and program-driven expertise has led Trinity Housing and St. Lawrence Place to be a recognized best practice in working with homeless families and their children.  Staff members have BSW’s, MSW’s, MA’s and so on. The board includes bankers, lawyers, financial and marketing experts who bring knowledge and heart to the organization.  You get my drift…we know a little something about what we do here.

As I wrap this up, please don’t mistake my tone for anything other than sheer pride in our organization, and a heartfelt “thank you” for the role you play in it.  It’s because of this team that we can function as a business and continue to be the voice of homeless families!