The Center's Words

Looking Back & Looking Forward!

by | Dec 18, 2023 | The Center’s Words

The Center has spent 2023 honoring those who have supported its mission. Thank you to the individuals and  organizations that have made these 20 years of service possible. The majority of this year’s blogs have highlighted this ongoing support toward providing comprehensive, recuperative care for individuals experiencing homelessness.

The Center for Respite Care came into existence through the energies of several local medical and social service professionals who were daily made aware of the lack of options for a person experiencing homelessness and in need of medical recovery, the ongoing problem of being discharged to the streets with a shelter system unequipped to provide support.

Through a collaboration of the Health Alliance, TriHealth and Mercy Health Partners and over 25 homeless agencies, the Center for Respite Care was opened in October 2003 as a program of the Health Resource Center. Initial funding was from a grant request to the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation. It’s first home was a wing of rooms at the Center for Addiction Treatment (CCAT) on Ezzard Charles Drive in the West End.

On May 1, 2005, a separate non-profit corporation, the Center for Respite Care, Inc., was formed and the existing program was transferred into this new entity. No changes were made to the core program (mission, goals, services, clients, staff, management etc.). The new agency was granted 501(c)(3) status on December 22, 2005. On September 30, 2006, the Center moved to a building owned by Garden Park Nursing Home in the Cincinnati neighborhood of Avondale

In 2016, the Board of Directors finalized a robust strategic plan that placed an emphasis on growing the mission in terms of the  number of people served and meeting homeless adults where they are – figuratively and literally. To that end, the Center launched a successful funding campaign in 2016 to pay for a strategic relocation from Avondale to the newly formed non-profit hub, St. Anthony Center (SAC), in the central city neighborhood, Over-the-Rhine. It joined six other partnering agencies in December of 2017.

The Center for Respite Care continues to provide quality, holistic medical care to people experiencing homelessness who need a safe place to heal while assisting in breaking the cycle of homelessness. . The Center has provided over 6,000 bed nights and 144,000 hours of service in the past year.

Most recently, the Center for Respite Care  was featured in Movers-Makers. Local 12’s Liz Bonis interviewed Center CEO Laurel Nelson and great friend of the Center, Michael Chertock with a focus on his upcoming holiday concert benefiting the Center’s work.

Center co-founder Dr. Bob Donovan was a panel member on WVXU’s “Around Cincinnati” discussing the work of the Center for Respite Care, highlighting the ongoing  need locally and nationally. The  segment’s title was For people who are homeless and hospitalized, medical respite care can be a next step.”

The Center’s From Medical Recovery to Independence Program is educational rather than solely care-based. It is a person-centric model, treating clients based on their individual experiences, medical, behavioral, and social needs to wholly encompass their healing. Instead of struggling with basic needs, clients at the Center can focus on their care plan while staff help them establish a primary care provider, obtain personal documentation, income, and any other benefits they may be eligible for.

To this end, for every 100 individuals that come to the Center, 70 discharge successfully into stable, appropriate placement with community wrap-around support and a comprehensive understanding of these services and how to utilize them; as well as an established medical home, an understanding of their medical conditions and how to manage them through educative, preventative healthcare.

Thank you to all who have made the mission possible. We look forward to the year ahead and service to those who will be admitted to the Center’s care.

Give Today

The Center for Respite Care is a 501(C)3 non-profit organization. View our 2022 IRS Form 990 – Public Disclosure.








Get In Touch

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Center for Respite Care
1615 Republic Street
Cincinnati, OH 45202

P.O. Box 141301
Cincinnati, Ohio 45250

(513) 621-1868

(513) 621-1872

GuideStar Platinum Transparency 2021