Clare Housing’s History

Clare Housing you know today is the result of a long journey. That journey involved the compassionate energy of thousands of individuals from many religious communities and organizations.

Below you’ll find a visual timeline and written description of the openings of different houses and developments, and other major turning points that have marked the evolution of Clare Housing over the past 30 years.


A Benedictine, Brother Louie, opened the first home that took in people who were dying of AIDS and had nowhere else to go. Eventually, Brother Louie’s was licensed as adult foster care and began to receive public funds. This model served for future homes. Nevertheless, volunteers remained the backbone of the programs.


Through the efforts of members of St. Joan of Arc Church, Grace House opened in the former church rectory. Grace House is located in the Regina neighborhood of Minneapolis.


The Franciscan Brothers take over the operation of Brother Louie’s, renaming it Samaritan House.


Agape Home was opened in an 1890’s vintage Victorian house in the Central neighborhood of Minneapolis. Members of the Metropolitan Community Church were instrumental in bringing this home into existence.


The introduction of highly active anti-retroviral therapies changed the community’s need – from end-of-life care to three types of support: 1) transitional care as people recovered from acute medical, mental health or other crises, 2) long-term care for people disabled to the extent they would probably need the 24-hour support offered by the homes for the foreseeable future and, 3) end-of-life care.


Clare House is opened in the MacGroveland neighborhood of St. Paul, with major support from the Sisters of St. Francis and members of the Roman Catholic community of St. Paul.


Grace II, designed and built specifically for the purpose of housing people living with HIV/AIDS is opened next to the original Grace House, with great support from the local design community.


Agape Dos, also designed and built specifically for people living with HIV/AIDS opened in the Lyndale neighborhood of Minneapolis.


Grace and Agape Homes merge to form AIDS Care Partners.


With a change in the ministry of the Brothers, Clare Housing assumes the operations of Samaritan House, renaming it Damiano House.


Clare Housing opens it’s first apartment building with Clare Apartments, offering 32 units of supportive housing for people living with HIV in the St. Anthony neighborhood of Northeast Minneapolis. The shift from opening Community Care Homes to multi-unit affordable housing with supports reflects the growing independence made possible thanks to Antiretroviral Therapies.


AIDS Care Partners and Clare Housing merge.


Clare Housing sets a five-year strategic plan to create more housing for people living with HIV/AIDS in the Twin Cities.


Clare Housing completes the funding for Clare Midtown and begins construction at the site in spring of 2010. Project Cornerstone, which will later transform into the Scattered Site Housing program, begins. This innovative program enables Clare Housing to partner with nonprofit and for-profit rental property owners to set aside dedicated affordable housing for people living with HIV within both market rate and other affordable housing developments. This move opens up more housing for very independent individuals, as well as families affected by HIV.

Clare Housing’s board of director sets a new four year strategic plan. The goals are to increase housing opportunity for people living with HIV with 60 units by 2014; increase influence in the creation of policy and allocation of resources at the local, state and national level; and enhance financial sustainability.


Clare Midtown, Clare Housing’s second multi-unit apartment building, opens providing 45 units of affordable housing for people living with HIV.


Clare Housing’s Board of Directors establishes a new Strategic Framework, setting a goal of adding 100 units of housing over the next four years.


Clare Terrace opens on World AIDS Day to a warm reception from the Robbinsdale community. This development provides 36 units of affordable housing for people living with HIV.


Marshall Flats, Clare Housing’s second development in North East Minneapolis, opens to provide 36 new units of affordable housing for people living with HIV.

In spring 2017, legislation passes both Minnesota state houses unanimously to create a Statewide Plan to End HIV thanks to Representative Keith Franke and Senator Scott Dibble. The Plan is set to be presented to legislators spring 2018.

The HIV Housing Coalition completed a visionary statewide HIV Housing Plan. The goal of this plan is to provide access to permanent affordable housing to all people living with HIV who are insecurely housed by 2025. Current estimates are that around 1,100 people living with HIV are homeless or at high risk of becoming homeless on any given night in Minnesota.