Where we’ve been, where we’re going

The Ottawa Mission is a non-profit, faith-based ministry that helps the hungry and poor in the Ottawa region.


In 1906 a group of Christian business leaders saw a need among men experiencing homelessness and created a shelter called the Union Mission for Men, which first opened its doors at 73-75 George Street.

In 1911 a new residence was purchased at the corner of Waller and Daly, where the shelter remains today.

Through the years our numbers and conditions have fluctuated, peaking at 300 beds in 1935 during the Great Depression.

On December 26th, 1992 we experienced an early-morning fire that changed the The Ottawa Mission forever. Diane Morrison, then an administrator at shelter, went on TV to ask for help and donations to repair the badly damaged building. Donations began pouring in, allowing  The Mission to add new programs and facilities in order to better respond to the changing needs of people who were homeless in Ottawa. A few months later, Diane was appointed the first female Executive Director for The Ottawa Mission, a position she held for 20 years until she retired in January 2013.

In the past 15 years The Ottawa Mission has developed new programs like the Home Hospice, the LifeHouse Addiction Treatment program and the Client Services Centre. Also, to mark our 100th anniversary in 2006, we opened the Stepping Stones Learning Centre and a Medical/Dental Clinic.

We’ve come a long way since 1906. With the support of the community we can continue to meet the changing needs of people who are homeless in Ottawa, offering hope to everybody who comes through our doors.