The Way Home: A path to freedom.

The Way Home, Inc.
P.O. Box 1103
Georgetown, DE 19947

Phone: 302-856-9870
Fax: 302-856-9871
Barbara@twhprogram.org

Way Home officials will bless transitional

home in Millsboro on June 10

Mon Jun 01, 2009 Sussex Countian

The media and the public are invited to a transitional home blessing at noon on June 10 at 324 Old Landing Rd., in Millsboro. The Rev. Max Wolf, Rector of All Saints’ Episcopal Church in Rehoboth and St. George’s Chapel in Harbeson, will lead a tour and bless each room of a transitional home for ex-offenders of Delaware prisons. The ceremony will conclude with light refreshments and fellowship.

The small Millsboro house stands innocuously on a quiet Millsboro side street. The manicured green grass and voraciously blooming flowers attest to the occupants’ gratefulness and pride for a second chance for a better life. Home first to homeless families until 2006, the three-bedroom house is now home for three men seeking a new life away from their choices that placed them in the Delaware prison system.

For 18 years, sales at the 7,500 square foot Christian Storehouse in Millsboro and donations from the community ministered to many Sussex Countians. “In the last 18 years, the physical Storehouse and the number of individuals and families that we could provide the necessities of life for have expanded and expanded,” explains Steve Smith, Director of The Christian Storehouse. “Twelve years ago, profits from The Christian Storehouse financed the home at 324 Old Landing Road in Millsboro for homeless families,” he continues.

“The program, although much needed in Sussex County, was not entirely successful as we did not have staffing for oversight and case management. About three years ago, Barbara Del Mastro, Executive Director of The Way Home prison ministry, approached us and proposed that the home be used to assist ex-offenders of the Delaware prison system transitioning to a new and better life. This partnership with her organization provided the necessary case management and blossomed into a successful ministry.”

“In the last three years, approximately 35 men have lived at the home while they learned new skills or worked at jobs to provide for their families and have a better future,” stated Ms. Del Mastro. “The men have to maintain the property inside and out, follow the established rules, complete probationary requirements and meet their goals and responsibilities to accomplish their plan,” she continues.

The Way Home’s mission is to free individuals from the cycle of crime and despair by providing them with holistic support after prison that generates hope, self-sufficiency and connection to the community. Since 1998, The Way Home has helped hundreds of ex-offenders stay out of prison, providing case management to participants for less than one-sixth of the cost of incarceration. The Way Home aims for no more than five percent recidivism among participants and seeks to eliminate recidivism among participants altogether. The Way Home is affiliated with the Episcopal Diocese of Delaware and is an independent, non-denominational non-profit organization with 501(c)(3) status. “The Way Home volunteers or case managers mentor offenders in prison and meet them as they complete their sentence. They provide counseling, transportation, food, clothing and other necessities of life as they transition into the community. In most cases, we maintain contact with them as they continue to build their lives,” explains Ms. Del Mastro.

For more information or to volunteer at The Way Home, contact Barbara Del Mastro, Executive Director, at 856-9870 or by email at barbara@thewayhomeprogram.org.

About the Christian Storehouse:
The Christian Storehouse is a Better Business Bureau (BBB) -accredited business since June 20000. This means it supports BBB’s services to the public and meets BBB accreditation standards. The Storehouse has a BBB rating of A+. Located on the premises at 149 Mitchell Street, next to the Town Hall in Millsboro, Delaware are an emergency food pantry, a 7,000 sq. ft. thrift shop, and a resource center. The thrift shop is open from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

For more information or to volunteer, call 934-8151.