Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Learning LifeSkills for a Better Life

Recently, I visited The Center of Hope in downtown Tulsa to chat with some of our caseworkers about some of the longer term housing programs that we have for homeless families and individuals, in addition to the nightly housing and meals available to the general public.

We also talked about the LifeSkills classes that clients in the supportive and transitional programs attend-- this is different from the "Pathways" classes for the general population in the Center's overnight shelter. The main difference is that the LifeSkills classes are actually tailored to address needs and concerns of program participants.

Program participants in the Supportive Housing Program (SHP) for homeless families, and in Project Able, our substance abuse recovery program, will typically participate in LifeSkills for year or more. In fact, the average length of stay for SHP participants is 456 days (or a year and 3 months); and for Project Able clients, it's 593 days (or a year & 7 months)*.

Topics in the LifeSkills classes tend to be focused on addressing issues that contributed to homelessness for the clients, in order to increase their knowledge and coping ability, so that they can remain housed after they leave our program.

For example, recent classes include:
  • Housing- How to find an apartment
  • How to open/ keep a bank account
  • Credit Scores 101
  • Examining Paradigms and Perceptions

In addition, LifeSkills classes have also been structured around book studies/curricula. Past book studies have included:
Financial Peace University by Dave Ramsey
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Steven Covey.

If you are interested in contributing to the LifeSkills classes, through a donation of either time or resources, contact the Center of Hope at 918-582-7201.


* statistics taken from 2012 HUD APRs

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