hope house gives

an abundance of love, hope, and support

By Lenox Warren

This article is being brought to you by cityCURRENT, Get Involved & Power the GOOD!

The Mission

Hope House’s mission is to improve the quality of life for HIV-affected individuals and their families by providing high quality early childhood education and social services. Hope House began in 1995 when a committed group of volunteers from the Junior League of Memphis set out to meet a growing need in their community. They found that women affected by HIV in Memphis had special needs and opened Hope House to meet the increasing demand for services. Hope House began as a daycare center serving five children three days a week and is now a comprehensive social services organization.

Get a glimpse of inside hope house

UNIQUE

Hope House not only provides early childhood education to HIV-affected children ages 6 weeks to 5 years old, but also offers social services to nearly 400 adults living with HIV in our community. Our social services include play therapy, individual counseling, case management, therapeutic support groups, a rental assistance program, emergency housing program, mentoring, emergency financial assistance and a program specifically for those who have been victims of crime.
Hope House is the only facility in the Memphis area designed to meet the unique needs of HIV-affected children. And in Shelby County the need is great. Not only is the rate of HIV in Memphis 2.5 times the state average[1] but the rate of poverty is also alarmingly high in Memphis at 10% higher than the average across the state of Tennessee and 12% higher than the national average[2]. According to a 2017 report by the University of Memphis, our city’s overall poverty rate is 47% and 45% of our children are living in poverty. In Memphis we find that HIV is disproportionately affecting those living in poverty. The rate of HIV is much higher in impoverished zip codes than in wealthier areas. For instance, in 2015 in the 38105 zip code, located next to Hope House, 2,963 out of every 100,000 were living with HIV. The poverty rate in 38105 is 46.8%. In the 38017 zip code in 2015, 109 people out of every 100,000 were living with HIV. The poverty rate in 38017 is 3.9%[3].

Our children and families at Hope House not only face the stigma that comes with living with HIV, but also the additional challenges of living in poverty, which can mean limited access to vital resources like quality childcare, affordable housing and reliable transportation.

True Impact

Hope House was aptly named, as we are here to be a place of love, support and hope for those living with HIV.  The men, women and children we serve at Hope House face immense challenges.  While our goal with every client in our social services is viral suppression, this can be an incredible challenge when they are facing the many obstacles of living in poverty and life in general. It is extremely difficult for someone to attend medical appointments and follow a medication regimen to reach viral suppression when their basic and mental health needs have not been met. Our goal for our children’s program is that each child ends the year on track for kindergarten and success beyond.
Hope House provides a unique service in which a client can drop off their child for care, attend a support group and see their individual counselor or case manager all in one day, at one location.  This has been an effective and often life-changing method of services for many of our clients. When you address a person’s basic needs as well as their mental health needs, it allows them the space, time and energy to focus on their physical health.

And studies show that these programs are positively correlated with viral suppression and better health outcomes for those living with HIV, allowing them to live a long and healthy life. We have not only seen our client’s lives change in the process, but also an increased excitement and willingness to become advocates and educate others to stop the spread of HIV in their community.

Get Involved

Hope House is a small organization that greatly benefits from volunteer support.

Volunteer opportunities include

  • spending time with our children in and outside the classrooms
  • being a baby rocker
  • providing assistance with resume building, interviewing, and job searching.
  • Help with our fun events in the fall and spring.
  • And MUCH much more.

We cannot do what we do for our clients without the support of volunteers. Volunteers are also crucial in helping us show our clients that they matter and are loved. You can find out more about ways to get involved by following us on social media on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter and checking out our website at www.hopehousememphis.org

cityCURRENT is a privately-funded catalyst for the Mid-South and Middle Tennessee. A team of more than 100 partner companies have come together to host FREE events, along with an array of positive-oriented media and philanthropic initiatives to enrich, engage and impact the community. Our mission is to #PowertheGOOD and we invite you to join with us.

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