This chapter briefly presents current social policy and programs for the homeless. The discussion is framed within the context of the federal, state, and local responses, highlighting predominantly rural states. Because homeless populations in the 1980s were viewed as relatively homogeneous, the responses to this problem tended to fall into one category: the provision of emergency shelter and food. However, as more information became available and homeless service providers made evaluations of the kinds of needs of this population, it became clearer that rather than being homogeneous, the homeless population in the late twentieth century exhibited a diverse set of shelter and service needs. As a result, a shift has occurred in the types of responses, from providing emergency assistance to a more transitional service orientation. It is useful to consider two categories of homeless service providers—“emergency” and “transitional” (Rollinson 1998)—and these two categories are profiled in this chapter to provide a contextual understanding of the nature of these facilities and the case study service provider.