A REAL Host Home Story:
Lauren is a long-time friend of Refuge Host Homes who has personally experienced what we aim to provide for Mothers and Babies in our community today. We think you will be inspired by the way God provided for her and her baby through a Host Home many years ago.
Do you have an extra bedroom and a heart for Biblical Hospitality? Could God be asking you to share your home and life with a mother and child who need to know His love in a tangible way?
What is a Host Home?
What is required of a Host Home?
What support is provided to a Host Home?
Host Homes are the main mode through which the services of our organization are provided. A Host Home can be a family, couple, or individual who is willing to open their home and life to a mother and child(ren). The Host Home must have a commitment to showing generous hospitality, building intentional relationships, and meeting the physical and emotional needs of the mother and child(ren) throughout the pregnancy and postpartum period. This period will average about 9 months, depending on at which point in pregnancy the mother entered into the Host Home and the need for ongoing support before moving into Independent Supportive Housing. Host Homes will go through a screening process to determine suitability which includes:
Interview with Host Home Coordinator
Home Safety Assessment
- Proof of Home Owners/Renters Insurance
3 Personal References
Host Home Agreement Statement (must be signed upon each new Hosting assignment)
Statement of Faith
The Right Motivation
The biggest requirement is that our Hosts are opening their homes in response to the love that they have already received from the Lord Jesus. Sharing your everyday life with someone is no small thing and challenges will arise. Ensuring that you are opening your home with the right motivation will help the rest fall into place.
An Extra Bedroom
Host Homes must be able to provide mother and child(ren) their own bedroom, at minimal. Ideally, Host Homes would provide a separate living quarters (ie: studio apartment or bedroom and bathroom separate from Host Family) so that mother and child(ren) can have privacy and maintain development of their family unit, while being in close proximity to support.
Meeting Basic Needs
While hosting, the Host Home is responsible to provide food, transportation assistance and basic necessities (bedding, bathroom and laundry supplies, etc) to mother and child(ren) at no charge. Mothers will be provided with access to community resources to help provide for baby items, clothing, and other needs that may arise.
Providing a Family
While being hosted, it is crucial that mother and child(ren) be made to feel like a part of “the family” and invited to and included in the day-to-day family life rhythms, such as meal time, grocery shopping, basic house chores, outings, holiday celebrations, and church or small group attendance.
Host Homes will be supplied with necessary training prior to first hosting experience as well as on-going training when issues arise in which the host could benefit from additional support. Training topics include Navigating the "System", Trauma-Informed Care, Understanding Poverty, Boundary Setting, Biblical Hospitality, and Daily-Life Hosting Tools.
Host Homes cannot operate in silos. The opportunity to connect with others who are in the trenches with them will enable a successful and sustainable Hosting experience. Peer Support will include mentoring, networking, and an annual Host Mini-Retreat in which supportive relationships can be established between Hosting individuals and families.
Host Homes will receive a monthly stipend of $300 to help offset the cost of groceries and gas required to meet the needs of the mother and child(ren).
Host Homes will be visited by the Host Home Coordinator on at least a monthly basis (more often following initial placement) at which a meeting will take place between Hosts, Mother, and Host Home Coordinator to ensure that Host experience is going well and problem-solving can occur in a team atmosphere.
A Host Home IS...
a family to be a part of
a free, safe place to live
a place to learn how to be a mom and people to ask when help is needed or things are overwhelming
Is NOT free childcare
Is NOT just a place for Mother to store her stuff
Is NOT responsible for all Mother's transportation
Is NOT responsible for providing Mother's clothing, toiletries, personal items or her baby’s items
A Host Home is NOT...