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Joseph’s Journey: Mary’s Home Welcomes First Residents

Mary's Home welcomes first residents

The latest issue of Joseph’s Journey, the biannual newsletter of Joseph’s Home, features an article about Mary's Home welcoming its first residents. With the first resident welcomed in late March, Mary’s Home is now providing a nurturing, caring place to recuperate for women experiencing both homelessness and acute medical conditions.

Below is the text from the cover story. Read the complete Joseph’s Journey newsletter here.

Mary’s Home Welcomes Its First Residents

A Dream Many Years in the Making Becomes a Reality

If a picture is worth a thousand words, an image of a new resident welcome kit posted to the Joseph’s Home Facebook page on March 25 spoke volumes. It proclaimed to the world, “Mary’s Home is officially open!” The story behind the image is much larger than that exciting proclamation.

For 22 years, Joseph’s Home has been helping men without resources who have acute medical needs heal and achieve independence. For those 22 years, there has not been a comparable ministry for women experiencing the same situation.

Mary’s Home is the realization of a dream that the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine had when they answered God’s call to serve the most vulnerable by opening Joseph’s Home in October 2000. Since then, hundreds of men have recovered their health and moved into permanent housing through the help of Joseph’s Home.

With the first resident welcomed in late March, Mary’s Home is now providing a nurturing, caring place to recuperate for women experiencing both homelessness and acute medical conditions. Mary’s Home joins Joseph’s Home as the only local organization offering care for people experiencing homelessness who are too ill or frail to recover from an illness or injury on the streets or in a traditional shelter.

Located next to Joseph’s Home, the building was originally built as a school and then used as a daycare. Following renovations, Mary’s Home is now a 10-room facility with an onsite kitchen, laundry, computer lab and medical clinic. Just like at Joseph’s Home, residents benefit from medical supervision, nutritious meals, nursing care, medication management, and coordination with health care, supportive service and housing providers to help them reach housing and health stability.

“The importance of opening Mary’s Home cannot be overstated,” said Anthony Searcy, chair of the Joseph’s Home Board of Directors. “What we have been doing for men for many years, we can now do for women and fulfill a need that has not been addressed in this area. Mary’s Home truly rounds out the mission of Joseph’s Home.”

Hired in November, Angela Butts is a social worker at Mary’s Home and its first full-time employee. As the home’s social worker, Angela works with residents to fill out their intake paperwork, ensure they understand policies, ensure they have clothing and transportation to and from medical appointments, acts as an advocate for them, and more.

She will also oversee bringing programs to Mary’s Home that have been successful at Joseph’s Home, such as music and art therapy, and group sessions on a range of topics from budgeting to healthy relationships to mental wellness. Plus, she would like to offer self-esteem classes, services of a beautician and gentle exercise, such as chair yoga.

“It was so exciting to welcome our first resident in March. There is tremendous potential at Mary’s Home to help women get healthy and back on their feet, to have an apartment of their own because health is finally not an issue,” said Angela. “I cannot express how happy I am to be the social worker here. It’s such a joy to be able to help women with health concerns.”

Angela said she expects that once Mary’s Home is fully staffed, it won’t take more than a month to fill all 10 beds as the word gets out. “I think our referral partners might even be more excited than I am because they’ve needed something like Mary’s Home for many years,” she added.

Thank You Mary’s Home Capital Campaign Contributors and Committee

Special thanks to everyone who contributed to the Mary’s Home Capital Campaign. With your generous support, the campaign raised more than $1.5 million, exceeding its goal of $1.3 million. Without your support, the vision to make Mary’s Home a reality could not have been possible. Today, women experiencing homelessness who need medical respite care have a safe, secure place to heal and achieve independence.

“We are deeply grateful to the entire capital campaign committee, including Jeanne Colleran Weaver, committee chair, and Sister Joan Gallagher, CSA, honorary chair. Thanks to the committee’s hard work as well as the work of our board of directors, we were able to tell the story of Mary’s Home and inspire donors to generously contribute the needed funds to expand our ministry,” said Beth Graham, Joseph’s Home executive director.

Mary’s Home Capital Campaign Committee:

  • Jeanne Colleran Weaver, Chair
  • Sr. Joan Gallagher, CSA, Honorary Co-Chair
  • Kristine Adams, MSN, CNP
  • William M. Denihan
  • Mary Denihan
  • Lorraine Dodero
  • Richard C. Gallagher
  • Natoya Walker Minor
  • Lisa Zimmerman, PMP