Ministry Spotlight-Humility of Mary Housing

March 11, 2023 | Posted in Catholic Sisters Week

From its founding in France in 1854 the HM Community has recognized needs and endeavored to address them. During the 1980s the growing need for housing assistance was especially apparent in the areas of Ohio where HM Sisters were already serving.

In Akron (Summit County) the need for transitional housing to serve parents with young children was clearly seen. Sr. Loretta Rafter, HM, founded Humility of Mary Life Opportunity Services in 1987 to meet the needs of these families. A year later, the ministry was expanded and renamed Humility of Mary Housing in order to better support other areas of housing need. .

Efforts through a local parish in Girard, Ohio, (Trumbull county) lead to the transitional housing program and homelessness prevention efforts at Emmanuel Community Care Center in 1993.

Six of HMHI’s program sites, including Emmanuel Community Care Center in Girard, Ohio, achieved a 3-year accreditation in 2020 from the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF). Sr. Jean Orsuto, HM, (front) proudly shows off the honor with Matt Smaby, Megan Scheck LISW-S, and Fred Berry, HMHI President & CEO.

An umbrella organization was needed to bring together these ministries along with Villa Residential Services at Villa Maria that was included for a time. Other populations were also being identified in need of transitional as well as permanent supportive housing assistance. Thus, in 1995 Humility of Mary Housing became Humility of Mary Housing, Inc. (HMHI), which it remains to present day

HMHI has expanded from its initial focus into a ministry that also addresses the needs of homeless young men ages 18-24, and low-income seniors in Cuyahoga, Lorain, Summit, and Trumbull counties. Local communities that are now served include Akron, Garfield Heights, Girard, Lorain, Northfield Center, Wellington, and Youngstown.

Today, HMHI promotes and strengthens the self-sufficiency of individuals and families, especially the poor, through advocacy, supportive services, and quality housing.

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