In 1974 Reverend Donald McCallum, a Glasgow Baptist Minister, along with volunteers opened a flat to offer care and shelter to vulnerable young women in Charing Cross, Glasgow. Eight years later a voluntary charitable trust was set up to run Elpis Centre as a housing support service - ‘Elpis’ was chosen by Reverend McCallum as it is the Greek word for hope. Around this time Glasgow City Council began funding Elpis Centre.
In 1987 Elpis moved to Anderston in Glasgow, providing two adjacent flats and nearby bedsits to support vulnerable young women in the city. In 2001 Elpis outgrew this accommodation and moved to a tenement building in Ruchill with nine separate flats and staff base. As some of the young women became able to live more independently outwith the tenement accommodation, Elpis further expanded to offer an outreach service with nine scatter flats in Ruchill and Maryhill.
Since then Elpis Centre has become an integrated service that accommodates up to 18 homeless young women aged 16-25 years. Up to nine service users with high to medium needs are housed in the main tenement accommodation in Ruchill, which is staffed 24 hours per day, 365 days a year by professionally qualified and fully vetted staff. Service users with less complex needs live in the nine scatter flats in the surrounding areas.
There’s a book about Reverend Donald McCallum by Ruth Millican called 'Purpose and Passion: The Uplifting Story of Donald McCallum - a man with a pastor's heart' published by Author House, 2009.