BAHS provides an emergency homeless shelter, food, clothing, case management services and transitional housing for homeless individuals and families in the eastern Harris County, Chambers County and Liberty County service area.
Bay Area Homeless Services began in 1982 as a dream in the heart of Rev. Mack Cook who served as Baytown Police Department’s Chaplain. He first began to take homeless men to his home, where he and his wife would offer shelter, meals and a place to freshen up.
During the late 80’s the agency purchased two homes on Wisconsin Street. One is used as an office, and the other was used as an overnight shelter residence for homeless men. More casework services were added to allow the residents to extend their stay for up to 30 days while they sought employment.
As more homeless women began to seek services during the late 90’s plans were made for a separate women’s shelter. In 2003, this became a reality as community volunteers built the new structure on the Wisconsin Street property. This allowed homeless women, many with young children, the same opportunity to stay in a safe and welcoming environment.
Baytown’s rapid growth in the 2009-2011 period led to many families relocating to the area in search of better employment opportunities. This also led to a surge in the number of intact homeless families in our service area. As a result of this influx plans were developed for a separate shelter where intact homeless families could reside together.
Through a Capital Campaign chaired by local businessman and philanthropist Roger Elswick, funds were raised to purchase additional space adjacent to our campus, and erect the new family center. A generous gift from the Perry L. and Lou F. Britton Foundation, coupled with pledges and gifts from the local community, enabled BAHS to acquire a matching grant from the Mabee Foundation.
The Britton-Fuller Center for Intact Homeless Families was dedicated on March 29, 2016 and features six separate apartments for families, community living and play areas, a community kitchen and a staff office. In its first full year of operation, the center has housed 25 families and provided more than 4000 bednights of shelter.