The Gift of Hope
Under a comprehensive umbrella of healing, we offer specialized services to address specific areas and issues related to homelessness. In each of these programs, Camillus House aims to treat every individual served with respect and dignity. By doing so, we’re committed to providing not only solutions to tangible problems, but the intangible yet precious gift of hope.
Meals and Showers Provided
Families and Individuals Housed
Individuals at Risk of Homelessness Assisted
Children, Youth, and Families
Providing a roof overhead in a safe community is part of Camillus House’s plan for helping the homeless, but the vision runs much deeper. At our Mother Seton Village and Verde Gardens (in Homestead) projects, Camillus offers at-risk families stability and a better, more secure life. But we also provide tools, programs, and services to such as job and life-skills workshops, parental counseling, daycare, cooking classes and more to strengthen families in multiple ways.
Meanwhile, The Camillus Youth Housing Initiative (CYHI) provides transitional housing for at-risk youth, aged 18-24. Young men and women in the program receive three daily meals, a room, bed, shower— and even healthcare. CYHI’s intensive case management connects residents with educational and vocational training, life-skills training, employment, benefits assistance, transportation assistance, health service referrals, and more. In short, the CYHI program helps participants make a critical transition to responsible adulthood. A recent resident of the program put it more dramatically: “it pretty much saved my life.”
Saving Local Victims of a Global Problem
Because Miami is a “gateway” city for the global scourge of human trafficking, Camillus House teamed up with the State Attorney’s office to create Project Phoenix. We provide human trafficking victims with housing, counseling, and other critical resources. Our 16-bed treatment center is South Florida’s only residential treatment program for survivors of human trafficking. By providing women with a safe place to recover and the tools to heal, we help victims recover their self-esteem, grow strong, and move past a dark time in their lives. This specialized program has literally saved women so badly broken by human trafficking that they’d considered or even attempted suicide. Through Project Phoenix we help them overcome and recover.
Preventing Homelessness Before It Happens
As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The same thinking applies to Camillus House’s Homeless Prevention Program (HPP) which provides rental support for families in danger of being evicted. It’s kinder and more cost effective to help struggling families cover a month or two of rent than to allow eviction and homelessness to happen. HPP is the only program in Miami-Dade County focused on preventing homelessness before it happens. We also provide short-term assistance to at-risk families by helping with basic bills such as utilities, and by providing them with gas cards, food vouchers, and other emergency assistance. Camillus House also operates the Homeless Prevention Hotline for all Miami-Dade County answering calls to assist people in danger of being evicted and becoming homeless.
A Second Chance at Life
Camillus House doesn’t give up on those passed over by society. Our Jail Diversion program seeks to assist non-violent misdemeanor defendants who are homeless and suffering with serious mental illnesses. We help these men and women avoid incarceration and provide them with a humane avenue back into society by including treatment and housing under one roof. Our specialized team includes psychologists, psychiatrists, case workers, therapists, nurses, clinicians, and peers. The program – a win for both participants and for the community at large – is working to make jail the last resort for one of the most vulnerable groups in society.
Specialized Street Outreach
Caring for the Street Homeless
Every morning, homeless outreach specialists from Camillus House hit the streets of downtown Miami. Under bridges and in parks they seek out the most isolated and desperate of our community’s street homeless population. Over days, weeks, or however long it takes, our specialists work to earn the trust of these forgotten men and women. We diagnose their condition, address their medical issues and addictions, and make sure they have – and take – the medications they need. Unlike any other human services organization in Miami-Dade County, Camillus House has dedicated outreach teams for three distinct segments of the homeless population: the mentally ill, the severely addicted, and the chronically homeless.
These teams understand that helping the homeless and guiding them into permanent housing, medical treatment, counseling, and other life-changing programs often requires time, and always a gentle touch. Ultimately our staff members strive to address the specific needs of each homeless person, we work with them to improve their lives, and, when possible, we help them rejoin society.
Camillus House has an 83% success rate in moving Veterans to destinations other than the streets or back to homelessness.
Lifting up Those Who Served Us
No one who has served our country overseas should end up living on the streets when they come home. That’s why our first priority is helping our servicemen and women into transitional and permanent housing. But that’s just step one of our work to help returning Vets reintegrate into the community. We seek to build a supportive community where Vets gain access to case management and counseling, and to therapeutic groups and activities. They receive help navigating benefits and employment assistance, health and social service navigation. We give them the tools and support to recover, to go back to school, and eventually to live independently. We meet them where they are, on their journey. This is how we say, “welcome home and thank you for your service.”
An Army Man – Tenacious, Grateful, and Hopeful
After spending years in the military, John Murnahan (pictured right) never expected to experience housing insecurity. By all accounts, he was doing everything “right.” He had a steady job, was working hard and did his best to make ends meet.… Continue reading →