Serving Kansas City’s homeless since 1986

SAVE, Inc. was founded in 1986 as the first 24-hour hospice care facility in Missouri for individuals dying from AIDS. It is the sole provider of specialized housing for those with HIV/AIDS in the bi-state, Kansas City metropolitan region. From the original hospice six-bed facility – SAVE Home – SAVE Inc. has expanded its services to owning and operating 7 properties, which include 66 units of housing for transitional and permanent purposes.  SAVE, Inc. also provides emergency housing, referral services, and rental/utility assistance to individuals and families in a 15-county metropolitan area. SAVE, Inc. has invested over three million dollars in the capital improvements in the east midtown area of Kansas City, Missouri, successfully combining affordable housing development with urban revitalization.

Our Timeline

1985 The Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) in midtown Kansas City was instrumental in creating Good Samaritan Project (GSP), now Thrive Health Connection, an AIDS social service agency. Initial services included advocacy, buddy/companion and medical referrals. As the AIDS epidemic grew in Kansas City, so did the need for hospice care. To combat this need, Dick Keller, a local real estate agent donated a home to GPS which was later turned into a six-bedroom hospice called the Good Samaritan House.
Business leaders and community volunteers, mainly from the gay community, met with Father Carney from St. Elizabeth’s Rectory to utilize Catholic Charities’ 501(c)3 status to support the Good Samaritan House. Volunteers put in countless hours to rehab the home and more than $20,000 was raised to maintain the facility.

1986 Because of increasing costs to maintain Good Samaritan House, GSP planned to close the facility so they could focus on support and prevention services only. Thankfully, a group of community volunteers stepped in and formed Saving AIDS Victims Entitlement (SAVE) Foundation which became the financial support for Good Samaritan House. Sandra Berkley, the wife of the then-mayor Richard Berkley, was instrumental in ensuring the house remained open.

SAVE Foundation forms as a 501(c)3 in August 1986.

1988 In early 1988, GSP’s offices relocate from the basement of Good Samaritan House to another midtown location. For financial reasons, the board and executive director of GSP announced the closing of Good Samaritan House. Pink Floyd was in town for a concert and saw an article in The Kansas City Star indicating GSP’s intent to close the hospice. Pink Floyd donates $10,000 to keep the house open. The SAVE Foundation takes over to provide both management and fund-raising activities of the Good Samaritan House which becomes known as SAVE Home.

1989 Dick Keller deeds SAVE Home to SAVE Foundation. The acronym Saving AIDS Victims Entitlement is no longer used, and the agency simply refers to itself as SAVE Foundation.

1990 Ramona Ellen King becomes first executive director of SAVE Foundation. Her tenure spans more than 10 years. Jerry Gilligan passes away. SAVE Foundation no longer functions under the umbrella of the Inner-City Services Program of St. Marks Church for insurance and financial reasons.

1991 McCarty Place, a six-plex with one-bedroom apartments, opens and is named after James (Jay) McCarty, a founding board member. McCarty is used as housing for individuals who are HIV-positive and provides permanent housing for low-income individuals living with HIV/AIDS. Gilligan Home, a building with three, three-bedroom apartments, is rehabbed and opens. Gilligan Home is named after Gerald S. Gilligan, also a founding board member of SAVE, Inc. The facility provides permanent housing for low-income families affected by HIV/AIDS.

1992 SAVE Home is renovated and expanded to an eight-bedroom home. SAVE Foundation administration offices move to the second floor of SAVE Home.

1993 SAVE Foundation expands and moves its offices to McCarty Place.

1994 Kansas City, Missouri, is awarded new federal dollars, Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA), to provide housing assistance to people living with HIV/AIDS.  SAVE Foundation becomes the sole contractor with the Kansas City, Missouri, Health Department to provide such services. The initial grant award is $992,180.

SAVE Foundation begins a rental/utility assistance program to assist low-income individuals living with HIV/AIDS. With the new HOPWA contract, SAVE Inc. is able to expand services to a bi-state, 11-county radius in the Kansas City region.
Jay McCarty passes away.

1995 SAVE Foundation is awarded funds through the Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Section 811 program to provide housing for persons with disabilities. Prairie Home, a four-apartment complex, consists of two three-bedrooms and two two-bedroom apartments built with Section 811 funds to provide independent, permanent housing for families affected by HIV/AIDS. Prairie Home is named after the United Church of Christ church, Colonial Church, in Prairie Village. Retired Army Col. Karl Cropsey, a SAVE Inc. founding board member, dies. SAVE Foundation moves its administrative office from McCarty Place to an office building on Broadway.

SAVE Foundation changes the name to SAVE, Inc.

1996 Cropsey Place, a 24-unit, one-bedroom complex, is established with Section 811. Cropsey Place provides independent housing for individuals with disabilities, primarily HIV/AIDS. Cropsey is named after retired Army Col. Karl Cropsey.

1998 SAVE, Inc. is awarded another Section 811 grant from HUD and constructs Cropsey Terrace, also named after retired Army Col. Karl Cropsey. Cropsey Terrace is a 12-unit, one-bedroom apartment complex for individuals who are able to live independently.
SAVE, Inc. begins providing assistance to homeless individuals and families needing emergency and transitional housing and related services.

SAVE, Inc. receives a grant award from the Missouri Department of Mental Health to provide rental and utility assistance to individuals and families who are homeless and suffer from mental illness, substance abuse addiction and/or living with AIDS.

1999 Mitchell House, a three-story stone house, is purchased and renovated to house the administrative offices of SAVE, Inc. Mitchell House is named after SAVE, Inc.’s founding board treasurer, Loyed Mitchell.
McCarty II, a duplex next to McCarty Place, is purchased and rehabbed utilizing funds from the Missouri Housing Development Commission. McCarty II is designed to provide transitional housing for low-income families affected by HIV/AIDS. McCarty II is named after Jay McCarty, a founding board member.

Stepping Stones is created with support from the Missouri Housing Development Commission to provide transitional housing for individuals who are low-income and living with HIV/AIDS. Stepping Stones is an eight-unit studio apartment complex, which was originally the carriage house to Mitchell House.

SAVE Inc. receives the Missouri Governor’s Award for Excellence in Affordable Housing.

2000 SAVE, Inc. receives the Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) National Top 100 “Best of the Best” award and honorable mention from Fannie Mae Foundation’s Maxwell Awards of Excellence 2000 for the Production of Low-Income Housing.

2013 Entered into an agreement with Truman Medical Center Behavioral Health to operate the STAIR program (SAVE Truman Advocating Independence Readiness); a one-year long, transitional housing program for chronically mentally ill patients. It operates out of the Stepping Stones building

2015 In response to substantial growth in the Tenant-Based Rental Assistance programs, the staff at the agency has grown to a point that new administrative space is required. A commercial building that has been owned since 1999 and used as storage is renovated and opened as the Silverleaf Building. Besides providing office space for the staff supporting the voucher programs, it has conference space to be used for training.

2017 To help prevent victims of domestic violence living with HIV/AIDS from falling into homelessness, SAVE, Inc., along with partners MOCSA and the City of Kansas City, Missouri, was awarded a three-year demonstration grant by HUD and the Department of Justice. The goal of this special project is to address the issue of HIV/AIDS and intimate partner violence as these issues intersect with one another. SAVE, Inc., along with our local partners, is one of only eight groups across the country to receive the award.