The F.C. Tucker Giving Circle was established to give agents and staff the opportunity to pool their donations as a group, nominate worthy local philanthropic organizations for funding and then vote on which organizations to support. For 2021 funding, 33 incredible organizations applied and agents and staff selected nine to receive a combined $81,000 in grants.
Each month, we’ll feature one of the nine organizations to learn more about the amazing work they do in our communities.
Getting to Know The O’Connor House
What population of people and geographic area does your organization serve?
The O’Connor House is a faith-based organization that provides a home for single, homeless pregnant women, ages 18-years and older, and their children. These women commonly come from generational poverty, have a history of trauma, and have had a lack of education, resources, and a support system. While many come from Marion County and the surrounding area, we accept women from across the country who are in need of our services.
What is the story of your organization’s founding?
We officially began our ministry in 2005 when we opened our first home in Carmel, IN. Our co-founders received support and direction from Good Counsel Homes in NYC on many issues surrounding the housing and care of the women. Then, in 2011 we received a grant which allowed us to build a new home in Carmel on Village Drive, which is where we are located today. This home allows us to serve up to eight women at a time plus their children. Today, over 440 women and children have been sheltered and served through The O’Connor House!
What one thing most surprises people about your organization?
Many people are surprised to hear that our ministry exists and serves such a specific population. Our services are unique because we are not a homeless shelter, but rather a structured program that requires our residents to be productive and to take action steps towards improving life for themselves and for their children. This includes earning a high school degree, finding employment, participating in life skills classes, and other activities that help them reach their goals. Visitors are also surprised to step inside such a beautiful and well-maintained home with a community kitchen, finished basement, large backyard, and private bedrooms for each resident and her child(ren).
What are recipients of your services saying about your organization?
“[Theo] is so big and smart! I’m so glad I was there with you guys. I really believe all of your different advice has helped me raise him so well!” — Past resident, Airika, on raising her son, Theo, at The O’Connor House
If people want to volunteer with your organization, what is their next step?
Individual and group volunteers are always welcome and appreciated!
The first step is to visit our website and to fill out a volunteer application: https://www.theoconnorhouse.org/how-you-can-help/volunteer/
A member of our team will then be in contact regarding next steps.
Is there anything else you’d like readers to know?
The O’Connor House takes a holistic approach in its services by focusing on the health and nourishment of the mind, body, and spirit. We first provide immediate critical resources including shelter, food, clothing, transportation, and weekly counseling. We also provide a Life Skills Program which helps the women learn new skills and healthy living habits such as cooking, budgeting, and prenatal care. Above all, our young mothers receive care, compassion and encouragement from our staff and volunteers.
For more information, please visit www.theoconnorhouse.org.