Wilmington Dream Center, our supportive housing program, includes twelve beds of transitional housing for homeless women and two apartments for families, most of whom are victims of trauma– particularly domestic violence and sexual abuse. Often, they are recovering from addiction, a high percentage of whom suffer from mental illness. In addition, there are two units of permanent, supportive housing for chronically homeless women who are unlikely to be able to live independently and need continual support to remain housed.
At Wilmington Dream Center, emphasis is on the importance of personal relationships in creating meaningful and sustainable change. Clients who demonstrate the highest outcome achievement are those who feel secure enough in relationships to tackle the hard work of personal growth.
When a resident feels loved and genuinely confident in their relationship with Wilmington Dream Center staff, they address barriers such as co-dependence, lack of self-esteem, abandonment issues, and poor coping skills. These are just some of the root causes of homelessness for the majority of our clients.
Dealing with the external markers of income and housing, without addressing root causes, is ineffective in creating long-term results. With this in mind, we have a team of volunteers whose work is to use recreational and problem-solving activities to build relationships with residents. These volunteers are trained to encourage trust and model healthy boundaries. Trusting relationships facilitate residents’ changed behaviors resulting in improved income and housing conditions for each household.