Milwaukee Rescue Mission Celebrates 125th Anniversary

This May, the Milwaukee Rescue Mission (MRM) celebrates its 125th anniversary. Since 1893, MRM has provided essential resources for those who are hurting and homeless in Milwaukee, including meals, shelter and other care. Over a century later, MRM continues to provide for the basic needs of our homeless neighbors, and has expanded the mission of its founders to focus on education for children and adults, job training and community resources.

“We are humbled to see how God has been so faithful since our founding,” says Dr. Patrick Vanderburgh, President of MRM. “And we are grateful for the generous support of our community. Without the contributions of so many of our generous neighbors, we wouldn’t be able to help those in need in our city—and we wouldn’t be celebrating 125 years of ministry!”

In 1893, Civil War veterans in Milwaukee were struggling with issues like alcoholism and homelessness and had few resources available to them. That May, a group of churches met together and the concerned citizens took an offering to open the Milwaukee Rescue Mission. MRM provided meals and shelter, as well as opportunities to work and hear about the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

For 125 years, MRM has continued that work and expanded it. In 1991, MRM opened Joy House, a shelter for women and children that now houses up to 100 people each night. In 2006, MRM started Cross Trainers Academy, a private school for children in the community that now serves around 300 students K4-12th grade. In 2014, the Equip department was established to provide resources to the community, including tutoring programs, a summer City Camp, discounted fresh groceries, hygiene items, job fairs and legal help. Most recently, Joy House was expanded through the Door of Hope program in early 2018, which serves single women who are homeless.

The Milwaukee Rescue Mission celebrated this milestone anniversary with around 450 friends and supporters at the Pfister Hotel on May 17, 2018.

The Milwaukee Rescue Mission is a Christian organization that has served those who are hurting and homeless in Milwaukee since 1893. At the Main Campus at 19th and Wells Streets, Safe Harbor offers emergency shelter and long- term care to homeless men, while Joy House serves homeless women and children. Guests receive food, shelter, spiritual direction, job-skills training and other services to give them a fresh start. Each year, MRM provides around 300,000 meals and approximately 90,000 nights of shelter. The Equip community resource program also provides tutoring for area children, job resources and basic necessities. In addition to MRM’s Main Campus, the North Campus on 15th and Center Streets houses Cross Trainers Academy, a school for at-risk children from K4 to 12th grade, as well as a 4-star licensed daycare. More community outreach programs are scheduled to launch at the North Campus in coming months.