Shelter Care was established in 1984 as an outreach ministry of Emmanuel Episcopal Church in downtown Rockford to respond to the growing population of homeless in the Rockford metropolitan area. A year later, it was honored with the designation as a Jubilee Ministry Center by the National Episcopal Church. Shelter Care is affiliated with Emmanuel Episcopal Charities and the United Way.
In 1995, Shelter Care started its Emergency and Transitional Housing Program for families in homelessness; this program has expanded to 20 furnished apartments. These units specifically serve families with minor children, allowing the family to stay together as adults work to stabilize their situation.
Shelter Care recently became the managing partner of MAYA’S House (founded by the Junior League of Rockford in 2003). MAYA'S House is a day time Drop-In Day Center for homeless children. MAYA'S House gives parents a safe, structured, educational environment for their children while allowing them to look for a job or obtain the training or education they need.