Founded in 2002, Modest Needs is a non-profit organization with a unique, threefold mission. Modest Needs exists:

  1. To responsibly provide short-term financial assistance to individuals and families in temporary crisis who, because they are working and live just above the poverty level, are ineligible for most types of conventional social assistance but who (like many of us) are living one or two lost paychecks away from the kind of financial catastrophe that eventually leads to homelessness;

  2. To lessen the burden of state and federal agencies charged with the care of the truly indigent by doing everything in our power to stop these at-risk households from slipping into the cycle of poverty, despite the burden posed by an unanticipated, emergency expense; and

  3. To promote compassion and generosity on the part of individual persons living in the United States and Canada, the areas that we serve, by standing as a living testament to the power of human kindness to change lives, no matter how much (or how little) a person has to share.

In keeping with our mission:

  • We have designed our programs to help those who work hard and have nowhere else to go for assistance, as well as those who give back to our communities and country such as public school teachers, first responders, veterans returning from service abroad and active duty military members. Our aim is to support those who don't generally qualify to receive assistance from conventional agencies so that they don't find themselves losing everything because of a short-term crisis.

  • As a matter of policy, we do not ever give cash directly to the persons who apply for help from Modest Needs; rather, when our donors empower us to make a grant, we assist the person who has requested our help by remitting payment directly to the vendor or creditor named in the applicant's documentation.

    By operating this way, our donors always know for certain that the funds they've made available to our qualified applicants serve only the purpose for which they were intended; and

  • We never charge a fee to our applicants, and the grants we make come with absolutely no strings attached and never have to be repaid. We make only one request of the people we're able to help; we ask them to say 'thank you' to the individual donors who made it possible for us to help them in their times of need.

    You can read the 'thank you' notes left by the persons we've been able to help from our inception in 2002 to present in the Testimonials section of the Modest Needs website.


We are so very grateful to you for your interest in Modest Needs. In fact, because we do not ever solicit or accept government funding, without the generous support of persons just like you, the critical work we're doing together simply would not be possible.

So if you believe in who we are and what we stand for, we'd invite you to join the thousands of persons across the United States and Canada who regularly support Modest Needs. Together, we can change the lives of the people who need our help the most - one hard-working person at a time.