Stepping Stone sees more housing graduates

By Robert Mitchell

Stepping Stone, a ministry of the Chester, Pa., Corps that helps people find permanent housing, is seeing more success.

“We’ve been really successful in the last few months,” says Louis S. Morse Sr., the shelter supervisor. “We’ve graduated four adults into housing over the past couple of months. The need for shelter is tremendous in Delaware County, Pa., and The Salvation Army answered the call to meet the need of shelter and supportive services.”

The Salvation Army operates a shelter that has the capacity for 30 adults, both male and female. During the day, the shelter residents experience the Stepping Stone program, which has worked with people who are homeless for more than 30 years providing life skill workshops, financial literacy classes, goal setting exercises, and more.

Morse said the program also partners with agencies in and around Delaware County and the city of Chester. “These agencies provide additional financial and human resources that help our clients meet their goals,” he said.

Morse, who has been with the program for 16 years, said the program offers devotions during the day and people are also invited to church on Sundays.

Morse, who is a Christian, said helping people get off the street and into housing is ”really satisfying.”

“When people come in, they’re so broken and scarred,” he said. When they leave, they’re different people and it makes me feel so good that they’re able to do that. When they come through our program and get the resources they need and get back on their feet and back into society … the way they feel when they leave the program, I feel even better. I’m so grateful to God that I’m in the position I’m in, so I can help people reach their goals.”

Morse said the current officers, Majors Joaquin and Kathleen Calvo, “provide solid leadership.” and he also credited case managers Matt Beers, Joycelynn Denson, and Brian Bower.

The program’s most recent graduate to be honored was Lionel Jones.

“We have an awards ceremony at the end of each month, recognizing individuals who are making a difference in their lives by meeting their goals and, of course, those who have completed the program and have found housing,” Morse said.

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