1. How does St. Martin’s House differ from a shelter?
- Residents are not required to leave the grounds during the day, but are expected to attend classes, meetings, or go to a job or volunteer job.
- Programs are held, focusing on life skills.
- St. Martin’s House is a more structured environment. Residents complete a weekly schedule, do assigned chores and participate in monthly case management reviews.
- Length of stay- 2 years @ St. Martin’s House vs. 30-90 days @ shelters.
2. What is the application process?
- Step 1- Phone Inquiry — Potential resident must call. General information is captured and an appointment for an interview is given.
- Step 2- Personal Interview — Potential resident comes to St. Martin’s House to meet with Director of Operations, House Director and Assistant House Director in order for staff to learn about the potential resident’s history and goals. The House guidelines are reviewed and a tour of the facility is provided.
- Step 3- Background Check — Upon completion of the interview, potential resident will be asked to sign a release of information form to allow for a thorough background check. After background check has been completed, the House Director will inform potential resident if she has been accepted into the program.
- Step 4 – Admission Requirements – If accepted into the program the potential resident must fulfill admission requirements. These include basic documentation and safety requirements such as clean drug test, recent physical exam, and birth certificates and immunization records for children.
3. Do you accept everyone who applies?
No, we accept any woman in need of housing who would benefit from our program and meets the eligibility criteria, including a willingness to follow the program.
4. Do you accept men?
No, only women, and women who have children.
5. Are there any age limitations for children?
We don’t accept male children over the age of 10 due to the communal living aspect in our units. Female children over the age of 18 are considered adults, so St. Martin’s House would consider a woman with an 18 year old daughter as separate adults.
6. Is this a religious program?
No, St. Martin’s House serves women regardless of their religious beliefs, or lack thereof.
7. What are the living arrangements?
St. Martin’s House can house up to 12 families. There are 3 units that can house up to 4 families per unit. Each unit has common living, dining, kitchen and play areas. Each family has their own private bedroom and powder room, and share a shower/bath with 1 other family.
8. Are visitors allowed?
Yes, on weekends. Each resident must have a current, approved visitor list on file. Male visitors must be family members, such as uncles, brothers or fathers.
9. Will the father be allowed to visit his children?
Yes, we have conference rooms where the father can visit the children undisturbed, or with the mother’s permission, he can take the children off grounds for a visit. St. Martin’s House must be provided with any applicable custody agreements.
10. Is there a fee to reside at St. Martin’s House?
Yes, there is a $350 Move-In Fee, as well as a monthly basic fee of $60. Residents receiving income will be charged a rental fee of 30% of their income per month. Transportation fees (minimal) will be added to the rent for any transportation provided by the house.
11. Will you take my food stamps/monies to purchase needed items?
No, you are responsible for purchasing any items for your family/personal needs. $100 of the Move-In Fee is set aside in an account for the resident to use in emergency situations such as running out of diapers, medicine, etc. Shopping trips are scheduled around the dates when residents receive their food stamps.
12. Does St. Martin’s House provide transportation?
We encourage use of local public transportation such Delmarva Community Transport or All American Ambulance to get to medical appointments. St. Martin’s House has a fleet of house vehicles, and utilizes volunteer drivers for other transportation needs. Residents indicate transportation needs on their weekly schedule.
13. Do you offer child care on site?
Residents are responsible to obtain child care for their children. From time to time, volunteers can assist with watching children during special house programs.
14. What do residents do during the day at St. Martin’s House?
When residents do not have any appointments scheduled, they are expected to work on parenting any children that are at home, daily chores, homework, job searches, securing any needed services by phone or email, etc. We encourage our residents to be active during the day.
15. What agencies partner with St. Martin’s House?
St. Martin’s works closely with many state and local agencies such as: Department of Social Services, Family Support Center, Chesapeake Voyagers, Workforce Investment Board and local drug rehab facilities. These partnerships allow us to offer our residents full access to many services, depending on the resident’s individual needs.
16. What classes are offered at St. Martin’s House?
Parent/child activities, health/nutrition, writing, Successful Women Series, gardening and many other classes assisting residents in improving life skills are offered regularly.
17. What happens if my child becomes ill, and I have to go to work/class/meeting?
You are ultimately responsible for creating a backup plan for child care, but staff will work with you in certain situations to assist you. If your child becomes ill during the night, staff will be available to assist you.
18. If I decide to leave St. Martin’s House, would I be able to come back?
That decision is handled on a case by case basis. Some residents have been allowed to return, and some have not.
19. Can residents be evicted from St. Martin’s House?
Any use of alcohol or drugs, or exhibiting threatening behavior towards other residents and/or their children, staff members or volunteers can be cause for eviction.