This week we are spotlighting Matt and MaryEllen Sears who have dedicated their time, compassion, and efforts to the women of Lily’s House through volunteering and being active board members.
How long have you been on the board at Lily’s House and what is your role in the organization?
We have been involved with Lily’s House since the beginning, over 3 years now, but we are the newest board members. We started on the Program Committee that meets with the women weekly to talk about their progress and make sure their needs are being met. As of August, we are also on the Lily’s House Board of Directors and serve as Communications Directors. MaryEllen still serves on the Program Committee.
What great things have you seen accomplished at Lily’s House since you’ve been involved?
The remodeling of the building to be used as the shelter was a huge feat. It looks amazing and is homey and functional. Also, moving from outsourcing our counseling and therapy needs to providing them in-house has given us much more control over who is working with our moms and allows us to be much more flexible in working around court dates, daycare needs, doctor appointments, etc. But the biggest accomplishment has been seeing lives changed. Most of the moms who have spent any significant amount of time at Lily’s House are still doing great – they continue to be amazing moms, hard working, and sober. It’s great to see Lily’s House helping to rebuild families.
How has serving at Lily’s House been a blessing in your life?
Seeing transformation in women’s hearts and lives. It’s incredible to compare the women we serve when they first come to us to the women they become. Seeing God’s power in action as he changes them, and as needs are consistently met, often before we even ask.
What would you like people to know about Lily’s House that they might not already know?
The women who come to Lily’s House struggling with addiction are no different than you or me. They are funny, smart, cool, sweet – women you could be friends with or who could be part of your family. They have dreams for their lives and their families, but breaking the chains of addiction (oftentimes generational) is so hard to do without support.
What is a specific vision you have for the future of Lily’s House?
Women who are transitioning out of Lily’s House have a huge roadblock when it comes to finding affordable housing so that they can be independent. We’d love to see Lily’s House add some kind of transitional housing to our properties so that women can be self-sufficient while still building their income or job skills.