Who We Are

Mission & History

In the early 1990’s community leaders became aware that services and shelter in Kearney, Nebraska for the homeless were inadequate.  They formed the Kearney Area Homeless Coalition.  The Kearney Ministerial Association, represented on the coalition, commissioned a study by Kay Payne, Director of the Center for Rural Research and Development at the University of Nebraska-Kearney.  The study revealed that 40% of the area’s homeless population was children.  Service providers had observed that many of their clients consistently returned for the same services, as soon as they were eligible.  It was their opinion that if families could learn to become more self-sufficient, the cycle would be broken and these families would be independent.  To move forward, the coalition set up committees to investigate funding, facilities, programs and policies.  The decision was made to provide transitional housing for homeless families who have been living or working in Buffalo County.  Mid-Nebraska Community Services (now Community Action Partnership of Mid-Nebraska) applied for and was awarded a Supportive Housing (SHP) grant from HUD.  In 1996 after the project was determined, RAFT attained non-profit status and the coalition disbanded temporarily.  In 1996 a facility was acquired and renovated, programs were developed and in April 1997 the first families began moving in.