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Resources Fact Sheet

Substance Use Disorder, Homelessness, and Mental Health in Kansas City

Where there is help, there is hope. First responders, hospitals, and nonprofits are rethinking their approach to helping those experiencing substance use disorder, homelessness, and mental health issues. Numbers prove residential facilities, like Benilde Hall, not only save healthcare resources and costs, but also result in better outcomes for those needing treatment and help, not to mention the community as a whole.

About Benilde Hall

In recovery, a “sense of community” must be established for the therapeutic process to continue, and sometimes even begin. Benilde Hall extends our continuum of care of services for clients affected by substance abuse, homelessness, and mental health by creating feelings of belonging and connectedness. In a “ripple effect,” we keep clients engaged in the therapeutic process as they become role models for the benefit of the whole community.

By providing services for treating substance use, mental health, and homelessness, individuals may return to the community as responsible, employed and permanently housed contributing members of society.



·         Opened in 1993

·         Substance use disorder treatment

·         On-site psychological services

·         Case management

·         Capacity to house 118

·         53 beds designated for veterans

·         Individualized treatment plans

·         RN on staff

·         12-unit permanent housing available for those who successfully complete program

·         Work program: lawn, snow removal and house painting services

·         Employment counseling

·         Financial and independent living skills

·         Recreation activities

·         Legal advocacy and referrals

·         Transportation

·         Spirituality

·         Referrals to community self-help groups



Out of 343 discharges:

·         89% were abstinent from substances 

·         100% were housed

·         69% gained employment or income

·         60% were successfully discharged from the program


Veteran Homelessness Statistics

  •  On a single night in January 2022, 33,129 Veterans were experiencing homelessness. 1
  •  Veterans make up about 6 percent of the population of the United States but 8 percent of the country’s homeless population. 2



Benilde Hall offers a transitional housing program with the goal to provide supportive housing and help homeless Veterans achieve residential stability. Services include skill building that will help hone skills to better prepare our Veterans for a successful, independent lifestyle.

The Veteran Capital Campaign expansion will add 8 single rooms with a private bathroom for Veterans in the Grant and Per Diem (GPD) program.


In 2022 3

  • 85 Veterans served through the Emergency Housing and GPD programs
  • Out of the 67 Veterans who discharged:

87% of Veterans successfully completed either the Emergency Housing or GPD program.

99% of Veterans were abstinent.

100% of Veterans were housed.

88% of Veterans had income.




One of 24 Safe Haven programs in the US providing immediate housing for individuals who qualify for VA housing referrals. Clients can stay for up to 6 months. 


In 2022 4

  • 75 clients 
  • 5,691 bed nights
  • 16 of those clients became permanently housed

Drug Court and Mental Health Court Statistics



Drug Court

An intensive, comprehensive, court-supervised treatment program for defendants displaying signs of a chronic and severe substance use problem. The main focus is to help participants improve their lives and health by becoming free and clean of substance use.

·         A minimum of 12 months intense treatment, including 21 days of inpatient treatment


Mental Health Court

Mental Health Court is to refer and monitor appropriate therapeutic interventions for defendants who have severe and persistent mental health illnesses. They must be realistically treatable within the mental health system and currently engaged in or willing to become engaged in outpatient mental health services.

·         Participants receive 6 to 12 months of mental health treatment


Average Costs Per Night


Benilde Hall         City Jail                 ED Visit                 Hospitalization    Average Homeless Cost Per Night to KC

$23                         $60                         $3,700                   $3,000                   $137


Kansas City saves approximately $125,700 annually with the Benilde Hall partnership.


  • Total clients referred by Municipal Court:       41
  • Average stay at Benilde Hall:                         52.6 days
  • % with income at arrival:                                31.25%
  • % with income at discharge:                          52.94%
  • Average monthly income increase:                $359
  • Total nights stayed:                                         2,095


In less than 2 months at Benilde Hall, more than half left with employment and increased income.


Insurers and Community Nonprofits Join Forces in Favor of Residential Programs

A Humana and Community CareLink’s pilot program changes how emergency responders handle calls and provide better care for people experiencing homelessness. Emergency room admittance is deferred if medically appropriate. Instead, individuals are placed in a residential facility for treatment of non-acute medical issues with the added benefit of stable housing while they are receiving care.   

The pilot allows for 60 days at a residential program. In the 10 months that the pilot that has been running, 50 individuals were deferred from emergency room treatment into a residential program at Benilde Hall.  




60 days at a residential program allow clients to find stability and potentially change their circumstances for a total of $66,000 compared to two nights and release at the ED at a cost of $370,000.


“Humana welcomed the opportunity to partner with CCL and Benilde Hall on this innovative approach to helping the homeless in the Kansas City community. The findings of this study will help inform future initiatives to improve the well-being of the city.”  

Jeremy Gaskill, Humana’s central region president


Those with serious mental health and substance use disorders frequently use the local emergency rooms for treatment or end up in local jails, which causes financial burden on local hospitals and government. It is estimated that untreated adults with serious behavioral health disorders and substance use disorders cost the Greater Kansas City metro area $624 million annually.


For more information, press inquiries or media interviews, please get in touch.

3220 East 23rd Street

Kansas City, Missouri 64127

Phone: (816) 842-5836


Executive Director, Erin Fraser


1  2022 Point-in-Time (PIT) Count

2 The number of veterans experiencing homelessness rose slightly even before the coronavirus pandemic

6 Emergency Room Deferment Program Saves Money and Helps People Experiencing Homelessness