Life in Transition
Our Long-Term Recovery Program At Hannah House
A Ministry of Good Works, Inc.
Breaking the Cycle, Building the Future
Good Works has existed to love God by serving the needs of people without homes and those in poverty in rural Southeastern Ohio since 1981. Since Good Works opened, we began to learn that homelessness is often a symptom of long-term, deep-seated issues in people that have resulted in broken lives and relationships. Ultimately, these unresolved issues lead to homelessness. We now know that a stay of a few months in a shelter simply is not sufficient to address the recurring issues or tragedies that people deal with, often causing them to lose their homes. Therefore, we developed the Life In Transition program in 1994, which is a long-term program designed to address those painful issues and develop healthy life habits. The Life In Transition program is for people who recognize and own the issues that have caused their homelessness and are now ready to enter into the challenging process of personal change to overcome those issues. Life In Transition is designed to help single men and women break the unhealthy cycles of their past and build healthy habits and relationships for the future.
How the Program Works
Residents in the Life In Transition program commit to live in the Hannah House for at least 3 months and up to 2 years. During this time they meet weekly to address their personal issues with a staff care-giver or counselor at Good Works. Each resident also works out a contract with the staff of Good Works, which lists specific goals and guidelines that are adjusted every three months. Residents share a room with an intern in the Hannah House, learning and practicing new living habits while receiving support, correction, and encouragement from others in the Hannah House community. Residents are expected to make the Hannah House their home, to attend meals there regularly, develop a network of healthy relationships, and participate in house activities. Finally, residents are guided through the process of moving out and establishing their own residence as they demonstrate increasing responsibility.
The Hannah House is home to three types of people: the House Managers who are on staff with Good Works and oversee the life and operation of the house; interns who are Christians that serve by making the Hannah House their home and living with residents; and formerly homeless residents in the Life In Transition program. Everyone lives together with mutual respect for each other and the house. The Hannah House is also frequently occupied by guests and visiting church groups that come to work with Good Works. The house is drug and alcohol free and is guided by a set of house expectations that help create a safe, clean, and stable place for everyone to live and grow.
As mentioned above, a specific and detailed contract is developed for each resident. The following expectations are common to each person’s contract and form the core of the Life In Transition program.
- Diligently pursuing the goals and boundaries set down in the contract by addressing problem areas and complying with house guidelines.
- Making constructive use of time with activities such as attending school, working, or volunteering, particularly between 10 am and 4 pm each weekday.
- Meeting regularly with both a Good Works care-giver or counselor. Meeting weekly with the Hannah House Managers.
- Attending three-four dinner meals per week at the Hannah House, including a weekly house meeting.
- Maintaining active employment in Athens County, paying a $200 program fee on the first day of each month, and saving at least $50 each month for future housing (when income permits).
- Developing relationships within the Hannah House community and participating in projects.
- Intentionally developing a support network of friends outside of the Good Works community.
The Application Process
Each resident goes through an application process in order to be accepted into the Life in Transition Program. The initial plan is:
- A few prerequisites:
- A 30-day stay* at the Good Works Timothy House.
- Employment in Athens County.
- Identify 3 focus areas they are willing to work on and set specific goals relating to these areas for the contract.
- Demonstrate the willingness to learn and change by keeping the guidelines of Good Works as described in the document: “Hannah House – THE WAY WE ARE.”
- The resident expresses interest in the program to their Care-giver at The Timothy House.
- The Care-giver provides contact information for the resident to contact the Hannah House Managers to arrange an initial visit, tour and talk about the Life In Transition program.
- After reading through the document “THE WAY WE ARE,” the resident must request a Phase I application as the next step. This application will address the potential residents goals, issues, and suitability for the program. This will be followed by a review meeting with the staff of Good Works. If approved, the person will move on to the following steps:
- A psychological assessment and obtain a police report on oneself.
- If approved, the potential resident will move into the Hannah House for a one-week trial period. This is an opportunity for the individual and the Good Works community to determine if the commitment necessary for this relationship is a realistic possibility.
- During this week a Phase II application will be provided and must be completed. This Phase II application addresses areas of history, family, finances, issues, and goals in much more detail.
- A final meeting is then held to discuss the Phase II application and affirm a contract developed by the resident and the staff. The potential resident is notified of final acceptance and scheduled to move in.
*exceptions are made on a case by case basis.
Life In Transition is much more than a program or a place to live. It is a process of transformation where a person’s life can be turned from the cycle of alienation and homelessness to a life of wholeness, healthy relationships, and service to the community. Good Works makes a serious commitment to invest in the lives of our residents, and we will support residents with committed care as we walk together through the challenging process of personal growth and positive change.
If you are interested in the program or know someone who fits our expectations and goals please e-mail us or contact the Hannah House Staff at 740-594-3336.