Access Center – Meeting basic needs and providing the support needed for change.
The Access Center, located at 703 West Liberty, Wheaton, IL 60187, is the only daytime facility for people who are homeless in DuPage County.
Individuals and families can obtain services to address the root causes of homelessness, including basic needs assistance; on-site parenting, self-esteem and other groups/workshops; linkages to medical, substance abuse and mental health services; access to laundry and shower facilities; and daily lunches. DuPagePads also provides a variety of collaborative strategies to assist individuals to obtain and retain employment.
Download Client Service Center Brochure
Access Center Staff are Available to Assist:
- Support in making positive choices and decisions
- Guidance in learning effective coping skills
- Help to increase social skills, verbal communication skills and time management skills
- Advocacy on your behalf to receive needed community resources
Staff Provide Support for:
- Establishing an individualized goal plan and assistance to accomplish your goals
- Referrals and linkages to needed health and social service solutions
- Assistance in working with you to prevent future crisis
- Referrals to our Career Solutions Program
- Referrals to our Supportive Housing Program (must meet eligibility)
Available On-Site at the Access Center:
- Emergency assistance and triage for unhoused individuals
- Intake services for Interim Housing Center
- Basic needs items such as shower and laundry facilities, lunch, mailing address and lockers
- Legal Counsel – A representative from Prairie State Legal Services provides legal counsel, advice and referrals once a week.
- H.O.M.E. DuPage – Representatives provide a Financial Fitness Program exploring the fundamentals of budgeting, credit counseling and repair.
- Women’s Wellness Group – Facilitated at the Empowerment Center in conjunction with Family Shelter Service, this group provides a safe location to discuss women’s issues and coping strategies.
- Men’s Wellness Group – Facilitated at the Empowerment Center, this group provides a safe location to discuss men’s issues and coping strategies.
- Musical Self Care – This group offers music therapy as a way for participants to relieve stress and anxiety through singing, breathing techniques, playing musical instruments, and listening to inspirational songs.
- Healthcare Alternative Systems (H.A.S.) – Facilitated by H.A.S. representatives, this educational group is held twice a month to discuss resources for addressing substance abuse.
- Occupational Therapy with Midwestern University – Midwestern University student interns run on-going weekly sessions on computer skills and nutrition.
- Basic Computer Class – Participants can participate in a five-week computer class to learn skills including navigating the internet, using email, best practices for networking with social media, and using internet resources.
- Money Smart – Through a partnership with Wheaton Bank & Trust, DuPagePads offers an 11-week program which covers budgeting and repairing credit. Upon completion, participants can open a savings account, regardless of banking history.
- Alcoholics Anonymous
Programs and services are limited to DuPagePads program participants only.
Hours/Days of Operation:
Access Center: 703 W. Liberty, Wheaton, IL 60187
Monday – Friday
8:30am – 4:30pm
Closed Saturday & Sunday
Within walking distance of the Metra Union Pacific West Line stop and numerous PACE Bus stops.
Phone: 630.682.3846, ext. 1 (Phone Based Assessment available M-F 8:30am-4:30pm)
Family Outreach provides comprehensive support services to families not consistently using overnight sites.
Last year this program served 130 individuals in 40 households and 68% are in stable housing.
The Family Outreach program began when an analysis found that families who were homeless would visit DuPagePads when they were in crisis and on an inconsistent basis.
This program provides a case manager to engage with families in the community at their temporary residence or an easily accessible location. The case manager brings basic necessities to the family and assists the family in obtaining all eligible benefits, enrolling in food assistance programs, addressing unmet healthcare needs, advocates for school-aged children and transportation assistance.
With ongoing support from their case manager, families develop a plan for stable housing and utilize emergent services less often, consequently saving the community tax dollars.
Thank you to the Blowitz Ridgeway Foundation, the John W. Squire Fund and Jack and Virginia Knuepfer the DuPage Foundation and the Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation and generous community members for making funding for this program possible!
Read about lives the Family Outreach has transformed:
From Eviction to Promotion – Theresa’s Journey
Homeless to Housing in Less Than 10 Days
“You Saved My Life,” Sharon’s Story
The Medical Respite program provides short-term housing and case management for clients recovering from an acute medical condition.
Last year this program served 98 individuals and 46% are now in stable housing or have a housing plan.
Families and individuals who are homeless often have a wide range of complex health conditions and as a result of participant feedback, DuPagePads began the Medical Respite program to provide short-term housing for clients with acute medical issues. Reasons for DuPagePads Medical Respite program last year included: mobility issues (36%), infections (26%), hospital/surgery recovery (24%), accidents (6%), chronic disease (4%) and pregnancy related (4%).
Without a place to rest and recover, individuals who are homeless and discharged from the hospital risk compromising their health which may lead to hospital re-admission. At the most basic level, housing provides a place to recuperate and access critical needs. Furthermore, it provides a secure place to sleep and store food, clothing and medications.
Thank you to the Amicus Foundation, the Community Presbyterian Church of Clarendon Hills, and Northwestern Medicine and generous community members for making this program possible!DuPagePads Medical Respite Program
Read about lives the Medical Respite program has transformed:
DuPagePads Helped Me Through the Fire
The Housing Now program rapidly rehouses those who are homeless and have income by providing financial assistance, the first month’s rent and security deposit, with a year of wrap-around case management services.
Last year this program served 39 individuals in 23 households and 100% have maintained housing.
Implemented in response to an emerging need, the Housing Now program assists clients who have secured income, but are challenged with significant debt, leaving them unable to save funds for a place to live. To compound this issue, many landlords require a security deposit and first month’s rent for tenants with low credit scores. For people living in crisis and without a home, saving this amount of funds can seem like an insurmountable hurdle.
In response to this need, DuPagePads launched the Housing Now program in 2015. This program provides participants with financial assistance in the form of their first month’s rent and security deposit. Households receiving Housing Now assistance agree to complete a budget with a reasonable expense to income ratio, and participate in a year of case management support services after moving to housing.
Thank you to the US Bank Foundation and generous community members for making this program possible!
Read about the lives the Housing Now program has transformed:
Where Dreams Happen – Diana and Gabriel’s Story
Homeless to Housing in Less Than 10 Days
Dreams Are Possible, Keanna’s Story