Aurora Project, Inc. was the product of several years of planning by a group of professional women who met throughout the early 1980’s. Most of these women represented agencies that dealt with women for a particular reason but did not have the capacity to work with other providers in delivering a comprehensive approach to stabilizing a client and her children.
Aurora Project, Inc. was established in 1986 to provide service enriched housing to homeless women and their children. The primary cause of homelessness is drug addiction and the chaos resulting from chronic, long term use; as well as mental health issues and domestic violence. The goal of Aurora Project, Inc. is threefold: to increase a woman’s employability potential; to stabilize her family; and to provide her with the skills necessary to obtain and maintain permanent housing. The environment for this transition is safe and secure housing.
Aurora operates 18 units of housing at three sites: Aurora House has 13 units of housing; two apartments at Covenant House and two units of permanent housing, located at 1023-1025 N. Superior and another unit at 931 N.Superior. Covenant House is a component of Aurora’s step-up housing program which offers more independence for women as they learn to use the skills they have acquired in the Congregate Living component of Aurora House.
Of utmost significance to the success of Aurora is the care and nurturing of the resident children.As Aurora evolved and responded to the needs of its adult population, the special needs of the children became more apparent. Exposure to drug or alcohol dependent parents oftentimes leads to a chaotic lifestyle subject to abuse and neglect.Aurora provides a variety of programming specifically designed for children to assist them in recognizing their role in their family as well as to gain effective coping and socialization skills.
The combined emphasis on healing both mother and child is one of the reasons Aurora continues to provide “new beginnings” for families.
All women successfully completing Aurora’s supportive housing program will:
obtain and maintain permanent housing
have no new interaction with Children’s Services
have no new interaction with the criminal justice system
meet education and/or employment goals
for a minimum of two years following their completion of Aurora’s program.
All children living with mothers successfully completing Aurora’s program will show improvement in family and social relationships for a minimum of two years following the family’s move to permanent housing.
Aurora Project has received a great deal of local and statewide acknowledgments for its achievements and innovative approach to empowering women. In 1997 it received recognition from the Ohio Department of Development as an Outstanding Program. In March of 1997, Aurora received recognition from Governor Voinovich for its work in the community. For the past three years, Aurora served as a pilot project of the Lucas County Drug Court; providing housing for Children Services’ “pre-removal” cases. Most recently, Haven of Hope, a housing program located in Grand Rapids, MI has met with Aurora staff with the intent to replicate a program such as Aurora’s, in the Grand Rapids community.
In-house programs help mothers to develop parenting skills and appropriate coping mechanisms in response to the stress of single parenthood. The combined emphasis on healing the mother and child creates a program that positively impacts the lives of its participants.
Aurora has built its program by providing services that are created from a direct need of its client base. As Aurora embraces measured outcomes and becomes more intentional about its service delivery system, the organization will have the ability to take a systematic approach to evaluating the entire program.
It is the variety and specialization of its programming that makes the Aurora Project, Inc. program unique.