First Church in Cambridge, Congregational - Shelter

11 Garden St
Cambridge, MA 02138
Phone: 617/661-1873
Fax: 617/876-5829
Web address:

Contact Person:

Mr. Jim Stewart

Organization Description:

The First Church Shelter, a Just Peace Ministry of the First Church in Cambridge, has been in continuous operation since 1987. It provides a a basic act of mercy to the poor and homeless of Cambridge and surrounding communities. Each evening, 14 men are provided a safe comfortable place to stay. Guests have access to two meals, showers and storage for personal belongings. The shelter also offers guest assistance with identifying and securing the resources needed to move out of homelessness, and into, transitional or permanent housing. Much of that assistance comes in the forms of referrals to other agencies and service providers, but shelter staff are available to help guests negotiate the frequently difficult and intimidating process of applying for public benefits or subsidized housing. The shelter also feels obligated to address social and economic forces that create and perpetuate homelessness and other forms of persistent poverty. The shelter is a founding member of both the Boston Homeless Solidarity Committee and Safe Injection Site in Massachusetts Now! These groups work with and on behalf of people experiencing homelessness and substance abuse disorder. It also works, at the local, state and national level (with religions and other groups), to promote public support for prompt and appropriate public action around a cluster of issues that effect poor people. First Church values clear guidelines, supportive structures and regular, mutually accountable supervision.

Opportunities for Student Involvement:

First Church will welcome any seminarian eager for a challenging placement. The student will be provided with opportunities to participate in all aspects of shelter operations: basic hospitality, program management, case management and supportive counseling, public advocacy/lobbying. They will have an opportunity to become knowledgeable in other, related, areas, such as organizational advancement, Christian Education and public speaking/preaching as well.

Commute/Transportation Information:

No information provided.

Arts of Ministry Competencies Offered:

  • Administration and Program Development
  • Denominational Polity
  • Pastoral Care and Counseling
  • Public Leadership, Community Organizing, and Planning


Student and supervisor will meet weekly to assess how the experience in moving toward the agreed upon goals, to reflect theologically upon ministry, and to clarify questions and concerns that may arise.

Additional Information:

  • Number of Students: 2
  • Total Compensation: $6000.00
  • Type of Compensation: Work Study
  • Additional Notes: This site is not available for 2019-20.

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