Genesis Home's Expansion Serving More/Doing More
Family homelessness emerged as a growing problem in the 1980’s and Genesis Home’s founders responded by establishing G.H. in 1989. Serving 15 families in the Family Matters Program and 5 in our Turning Point Program, we are the largest transitional shelter for homeless families in Durham, North Carolina.
Recently the climate for transitional shelters has changed. Federal guidelines for transitional shelters through HEARTH (Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing) are moving towards shelter stays of 30 days; transitioning families quickly from shelter to housing. In response to HEARTH, and working through a strategic plan Genesis Home is moving towards reducing the length of stay to six months and increasing support to newly housed families which allows us to serve more families in crisis. Currently, the average stay is 9 months.
Genesis Home is working with other service providers in Durham in an effort to provide better services to homeless families. Starting in June 2012, a coordinated intake process began where homeless families or those at risk of becoming homeless work with an intake officer at the Department of Social Services. The staff person completes a barrier assessment to determine the best program for the family and makes a referral to the agency. Due to the structure of our program, Genesis Home receives referrals for families with the greatest barriers or challenges.
For over twenty-three years, Genesis Home has provided a shelter program where homeless families can rebuild their lives and prepare for permanent housing and employment. Our ultimate objective is to end the cycle of homelessness for each family by building their overall capacity to create stable, healthy households. Genesis Home celebrates hundreds of families who have graduated from and transitioned into permanent housing.
Families need to feel safe and secure in order to begin their journey from homelessness to sustainable, independent living. Our case management staff meets with every family to plan a course of action to address educational, vocational, health and emotional needs. Referrals are made to partner agencies if a family needs additional counseling. Meanwhile the children are enrolled in school or daycare and we provide mandatory after-school tutoring to help bring or keep our children at grade level. We also provide funding for camp for all school age children for the entire summer so that they can have a safe, enriching summer and their parents can focus on their employment and educational goals.
Our holistic approach recognizes that education and improved employment skills are necessary for achieving independence. As part of the program, parents attend sessions on job readiness, debt reduction, financial literacy, parenting, and health and wellness. Clients and staff have weekly case management meetings for progress assessment and intervention/redirection if necessary.
With a theme of Serving More/Doing More Genesis Home is working towards helping even more families in crisis. When you make a gift to Genesis Home you give us the financial support to offer shelter and training to help homeless families get back on their feet and rejoin the community.
$50 - Helps us furnish a suite with fresh bedding and towels for a new family
$40 - Provides start up grocery money for a new family settling in
$30 - Provides bus passes for our parents to get to work or job training
$20 - Provides educational supplies for our school age children
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Director of Development