Mission and History

Our Vision

A community where everyone has safety, stability, love, health, and home.

Our Mission

To provide day shelter, resources, emotional support, and community connections to women, children, and marginalized genders experiencing homelessness and poverty.

Our Commitment to Equity

Equity and inclusion are central to our programming, and we focus our efforts on those most vulnerable and marginalized. We welcome guests of all backgrounds, regardless of age, race, class, ethnicity, faith, culture, language, marginalized gender identity, sexual identity, ability, citizenship status and other identities and experiences.

Our Values

  • Compassion: Rose Haven welcomes each person by embodying respect, openness, empathy and a non-judgmental approach to our work.
  • Individual Worth: The life and varied experiences of every person is deeply valued and supported. We work towards ensuring the guests of Rose Haven feel recognized with a sense of dignity, belonging and acceptance that values their individual choice.
  • Reconciliation: All members of our community commit to valuing one another through respect and forgiveness, and we offer a process for guests to learn and redirect behaviors towards reconciliation with themselves and others.
  • Zeal: (Love in action). Rose Haven embodies this energy through a holistic, person-centered, trauma-informed lens. We strive to provide support focused on guests strengths, avoid re-traumatization, and promote safety, healing and empowerment.
  • Community: As a community based organization that includes guests, agency partners, volunteers, staff, donors and stakeholders, Rose Haven recognizes that our collaborative efforts are essential to fulfill our mission.

Why Portland Needs Rose Haven

Oregon has the 2nd highest rate of unsheltered homeless people in the country, and Rose Haven is the only day shelter and community center in Multnomah County supporting those who are women, children and marginalized genders. We know the greatest contributors to homelessness for women in Oregon include domestic and sexual violence, unaffordable housing, wage inequity, and mental and physical disabilities. We also know that each person’s experience is unique and layered, and that those impacted need a helping hand to navigate the complexities of their worlds.

How We Show Up

Rose Haven is a low-barrier agency that exists not to just meet basic needs, but to nurture souls and improve the emotional, mental and physical well-being of our guests and our community as a whole.  We understand our agency exists within larger systems of oppression, and we seek to disrupt those structures through radical hospitality, advocacy on an individual and community level, and meaningful connections to resources. Recognizing the isolation and loneliness that homelessness can create, we work to hold a space where all guests can connect, have voice and be empowered.

Our History

Rose Haven is a 501C(3) nonprofit,  providing sanctuary at our current facility in NW Portland since 2007.

Rose Haven has been an important resource for women and children experiencing trauma in Portland for more than 20 years. We were founded in 1997 as a program of Catholic Charities after our founding director, Sr. Cathie Boerboom, a Good Shepherd Sister, and Joan Van Almen conducted a survey where they walked the streets of Portland and asked women what they needed. The overwhelming response was a safe place to go during the day, where they could take their children and access resources. Sr. Cathie, Stephanie Banka, Marjorie Phillips and Petria Malone first started Rose Haven based on these priorities.  Twenty+ years later we are still offering programs based off our guests self-defined needs; offering a low-barrier and accessible community resource center where women can meet physical and emotional needs, access social services and find community. Although not a religious organization, Rose Haven operates under the Good Shepherd value system which embodies “Compassion”, “Individual Worth”, “Reconciliation” and “Zeal”.

Rose Haven conducts quarterly guest surveys and hosts bi-weekly community meetings to assess the effectiveness and relevance of our programs. Ninety nine percent (99%) of our guests said they feel welcome at Rose Haven and would recommend our services to others. Ninety eight percent (98%) of guests said the environment is clean and comfortable at Rose Haven, know their safety is a priority, and that we have services that are relevant.

The Rose Haven Name

This name sums up the environment Rose Haven wishes to continually create. “Rose” was chosen for two reasons; each woman is seen as a rose with actual and potential beauty. “Rose” is also the baptismal name of St. Mary Euphrasia, foundress of the Sisters of the Good Shepherd. One of her sayings is, “Each person is of more value than a whole world (of things)”. She is Rose Haven’s patroness. “Haven” was chosen because it indicates safety, home, acceptance, a place to be comfortable.