Courtier Satterfield Social Essays

Submitted By Courtnie-Satterfield
Words: 774
Pages: 4

Courtnie Satterfield 10/13/2013

Bethesda House (Liberty Apartments)
History of the agency:
Bethesda is an Aramaic word meaning the “House of Mercy”. In the ancient world people traveled far and wide to seek healing and wholeness in the pool at Bethesda. The pool, fed by an underground spring, was thought to have healing powers for the many gathered on the five large stone porches surrounding the waters. They first started off as a drop-in-center for the homeless for 4 hours a day in March 1992. Where they provided respite from the streets, a cup of coffee and giving the opportunity to have access to phones. In 2002 Bethesda was one of the first agencies nationwide to open a housing first permanent housing program. The Liberty Apartments is a fifteen unit, sixteen-bed facility, located on State Street in Schenectady. Residents live privately and independently while having access to supportive staff 24/7. Fourteen units are single room occupancies and one unit has double occupancy; all units have their own bathroom and fully functional kitchenette. Each resident is encouraged to make their home their own, and if necessary, to stay permanently. Bethesda House remains the highest rank of innovative programming combining both Day Shelter Programs and permanent supportive housing. With the fifteen Liberty Apartments. The ten units at The Lighthouse, Bethesda House have successfully reduced chronic homelessness in Schenectady County. Their Vision happens to be human society as a just, hospitable and inclusive community rooted in and affirming the inherent dignity of every person.
Description of the agency building:
Liberty Apartments – Off white and Tan Building with A green sign on the side that says Bethesda House
Their Mission Statement:
Bethesda House is an interfaith ministry to the homeless, disabled and economically disadvantaged citizens of Schenectady County, building a just, hospitable and inclusive community one person at a time by affirming the dignity and addressing the needs of each guest entering this “ House of Mercy” They Fulfill this statement by Providing a safety net of social services and advocacy for the homeless, disabled, disadvantage , Addressing the needs of the whole person by encouraging self-respect , personal responsibilities, etc. Educate the community of the needs of vulnerable citizens by creating opportunities for the community to come together when concerning diversity and disadvantage. They also collaborate with other social services to enhance creativity, efficiency to provide an easy access to avoid problems in services.
Why this agency is vital to the community:
They provide permanent housing for chronically homeless individuals suffering from poor health conditions, substance abuse, mental illness, and developmental disabilities, and who have a history of moving between shelters and the streets. They have Life skill counselors to help them develop basic skills so that they will be comfortable being active participants in their community.
First time Guest Yearly – 3,073
Homeless Guest yearly - 4,984
17 Residential Services
35% of the residence is African American and the other 65 % are whites
Age Range
Ages: 21-30 5%
41-50 19%
51-60 71%