The success of the Minnesota Homeless Study relies on volunteers like you.


Join more than 1,000 volunteers to conduct face-to-face interviews with people experiencing homelessness. We are seeking qualified volunteers at more than 400 shelter locations throughout Minnesota and for a companion study on Minnesota American Indian reservations.

Learn more about the Minnesota Homeless Study


Most surveys take place on Thursday, October 25, 2018. Most interview assignments involve a 4-hour time commitment, and many begin in the afternoon or evening. Assignments earlier in the day are also available.


Volunteers must be age 21 or older and bring openness and flexibility to the volunteer experience. We also ask that you commit to completing the training with the materials sent to you prior to your volunteer shift.


At over 400 shelter locations throughout Minnesota including emergency shelters, transitional housing programs, and battered women's shelters. Surveys are conducted at non-shelter locations in some areas.

What's involved

  • Training is required. Volunteers receive materials and details by early October. Your preparation will result in a better experience for you and the individuals you're interviewing.
  • Site leaders from Wilder Research and other organizations provide direction and support to volunteer interviewers at each location.
  • Each interview takes approximately 30-45 minutes using an interview form (see the 2015 interview).


Sign up now!

You will receive a confirmation.

Watch your email in late July, when we will send you additional information about time and schedule availability.

For additional information or with questions about volunteering, please contact Karen Ulstad at or 651-280-2690 or Chris Lindberg at or 651-280-2728. 

"When I hear about homelessness in Minnesota, I remember my experience as a volunteer. I'm thankful for the people that are willing to tell their story, so that we, in turn, can do something about it." – Brooke Darst Rice, 2015 study volunteer

Study purpose

  • Provide an accurate picture of homelessness in Minnesota for service providers, policymakers, and the public to help inform plans to end homelessness.
  • Support funding requests for programs that serve people experiencing homelessness.
  • Promote efforts to create more permanent, affordable housing for all Minnesotans.
  • Learn more about the Minnesota Homeless Study

Special thanks to our funders!

  • Minnesota Housing Finance Agency
  • Minnesota Department of Human Services

With additional support from:

  • FR Bigelow Foundation (MN Philanthropy Partners)
  • Family Housing Fund
  • Greater Minnesota Housing Fund
  • Greater Twin Cities United Way
  • The McKnight Foundation
  • Minneapolis Foundation
  • Minnesota Department of Corrections
  • Minnesota Department of Education
  • Minnesota Department of Transportation
  • Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs
  • The Saint Paul Foundation
  • Wellington Management Group

For information on how you or your organization can provide financial support, please contact Greg Owen