Shelter Development Inc

A nonprofit organization

7 donors

In the Spring of 2014, Rick Staff and Nancy Gerrard founded Shelter Development, Inc. while Rick was in the process of securing properties for both the Warming Shelter and the Franciscan Hospitality House. The nonprofit was founded so the couple’s charitable endeavors could move forward with a stronger foundation. 


After a meeting with several key homelessness figures in La Crosse about the successes of Shelter Development in setting up the Warming Shelter and the Franciscan Hospitality House, the topic of child and family homelessness was brought to the table. Shortly after, the YWCA called Rick about a family that was currently living in a motel room because they couldn’t find an affordable place to live or a landlord who would rent to them due to previous evictions. Rick was able to help them find a property where the landlord was willing to reduce the rent and not hold their past evictions against them.


This one family spurred the program Francis Homes. The name was chosen because of the extensive community involvement and inspiration given by the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration, and also Pope Francis, who makes giving to those in need his priority. Francis Homes hopes to acquire 50 homes in the La Crosse area to serve those families who are not necessarily living in shelters, but are not able to secure adequate housing and services. Gerrard Hoeschler Realtors became a formal sponsor of Francis Homes. Note: Francis Homes is not affiliated with any religious organization.


Long term, Shelter Development is planning other projects to generate income. We are looking to develop housing for disabled veterans, incorporating accessible raised gardens. We are also looking to develop Francis Hall, a place for young single mothers pursuing their educations, as well as taking part in the Riverside north redevelopment. 


Organization Data


Organization name

Shelter Development Inc

Tax id (EIN)