OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) -When women are homeless or fighting drug addiction and they have nowhere else to turn, they can count on Sue’s Home. Diane Easley is the founder of the Community Care Network, the organization that runs the home. She helps women work towards a brighter future.
Katy Collins is a mother of two. She has been battling drug addiction and is trying to get clean for the sake of her family.
“I want to give them a better life,” Collins said.
So Katy came to Sue’s Home in Ocean Springs where they specialize in hope and second chances.
“Here at Sue’s Home, we provide a safe place where women can come in and get the tools they need to turn their life around and live successfully and be role models for their children and family,” said Diane Easley.
Easley opened her first shelter in 2003. She started Sue’s Home a few years later. The facility caters to homeless women and children, many of whom come from addiction treatment centers. While at the house, women learn how to get back on the right track.
“You make the wrong decision and that door gets shut. We’ve all done it. I don’t want you to do that," Easley told a group of women sitting around the kitchen table at the home. “God brought you here for a purpose.”
The long-term residential program is faith-based and offers more than just a place to live. Residents learn life and work-readiness skills as well as about subjects like budgeting a family household and parenting.
Courtney Todd was in the depths of drug addiction. She dealt with a volatile domestic situation followed by a heartbreaking divorce. She found love and support at Sue’s Home.
“This provided me a family, security, protection and safety, this while I was recovering from my divorce and drug addiction,” said Todd.
Since going through Sue’s Home, Todd has graduated from the program and secured her own apartment and a full-time job. That is the ultimate gratification for Easley.
“They live with us so they can get life skills and become independent," said Easley. “We have women who have done that and come back and be on staff with us.”
Residents are allowed to spend six months at Sue’s Home and, after completing the program, can become eligible for assistance with relocation, partial rent and utilities paid for three months. Easley and her staff receive funding through grants and donations.
While residing at Sue’s Home, clients attend Bible studies and receive assistance developing individualized physical, spiritual, emotional and family goals. Staff and volunteers also assist women with transportation to medical appointments, job interviews, parole and probation appointments, school, etc.
The program is driven by love and trust fostered by Easleyj’s commitment to making a difference in the lives of women and children who need a helping hand up.
“I do it because I’m supposed to. It’s what I’m called to do, to make a difference in other people’s lives," she said. “It’s where my joy comes from, to see people who are out in the community now and living a good life, and their children are living a good life. That’s why I do what I do.”
Sue’s Home was named for Sue Gray who died in 2006. Easley helped Gray with her drug addiction problem and was so inspired by her story of recovery that she honored her by opening Sue’s Home and expanded her mission of helping women in need.
For more information on Sue’s Home, including information on how to apply, visit their website by clicking HERE.