Open Door currently has three areas of Homeless Ministries:
- Welcome Home
- Showering Program for the Homeless
- Virginia D. Jackson Home for Women
“Welcome Home” is a rapid rehousing program for homeless women and families. Adults are better able to obtain and maintain employment, health, and stability by focusing on stable housing with intensive support services. In addition, stable housing helps ensure children are able to stay in school and be better prepared for academic success. Following the “housing first” model, the “Welcome Home” program works with each family to reduce or remove any existing barriers to housing and long-term sustainability.
The Showering Program for the Homeless is a unique ministry in our area offering unsheltered homeless persons a place to shower, a change of clothing, breakfast, hygiene items, and a place to do laundry. The goals of this program are simple—help homeless women and men become more employable, obtain sustainable income and end their homelessness. Participants are given all hygiene items, breakfast, have access to a hot shower, can wash and dry the clothes they have with them, and can even get a haircut from volunteer barbers. The Open Door Chaplain provides devotionals and Bible Studies. Representatives from the Georgia Department of Labor and Veterans Affairs come onsite each week to assist participants to get connected to other resources.
Virginia D. Jackson Home for Women
This home is the oldest transitional housing program for homeless women in the area (operating since 1986). Unaccompanied homeless women may stay for up to twelve months and are required to be working, looking for work, attending school, or participating in a day treatment program for substance abuse issues. Individual and group counseling are provided for each resident by The Pastoral Institute. Bible Study, life skills and additional training opportunities are provided. The program serves women ages 18 and older. Women typically come to need the transitional housing program through loss of employment, untreated substance abuse or mental health issues, divorce, and/or domestic violence. Up to 12 women can reside in the home at any given time, and the facility is almost always full. The goal for each woman is to move into and sustain permanent housing and to become self-sufficient.