During Women’s History Month, it feels appropriate to highlight a program dedicated to serving women in the Guilford County area. My Sister Susan’s House, the transitional program of Youth Focus, an affiliate of Alexander Youth Network, is a great resource for expectant and new mothers who are often facing homelessness.
My Sister Susan’s House is currently the only program in the area that offers long-term assistance to mothers and children in need and serves pregnant or parenting young women ages 16-21. The program offers the same services as HEARTH, a supportive housing program Youth Focus also runs. This includes a transitional living program, including counseling, vocational and educational training, independent living skills training, and other supports.
This program is in a unique home-like facility that provides a private “studio” style bedroom and bath for up to four young women and their children. There is also a live-in staff member accessible to mothers and children should they need assistance or guidance. The 4,400 square foot facility was designed by the University of North Carolina at Greensboro faculty and students, a true testimony of the power of collaboration shown firsthand in Greensboro, NC.
When asked about a success story within the program, Megan Stoner, program manager at My Sister Susan’s House spoke about a young mother who faced domestic violence and emotional abuse and needed assistance. “While at My Sister Susan’s House, she learned how to advocate for herself – something she was uncomfortable doing before the program. She learned parenting skills, obtained a job, and became financially independent,” Stoner said.
The young mother still reaches out occasionally to thank the staff at My Sister Susan’s House for their assistance during a period when she needed help for herself and her child. “She now has a full-time job, is renting an apartment, and her child is thriving!” Stoner shared.
The young women and their children can live at My Sister Susan’s House for up to 18 months. While in the program, all living expenses are covered so they can build a foundation that allows young mothers to live successfully on their own and be able to provide for their children.
If you are interested in assisting the women and children within My Sister Susan’s House, contact Megan Stoner at firstname.lastname@example.org by phone: (336) 312-2014, or via their website www.youthfocus.org/Maternity-Housing
Written By Brenna Drury