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Clare House of Lancaster is celebrating 40 years of supporting mothers and their children

The transitional housing program that has been in the heart of Lancaster for four decades is hosting its annual fundraiser virtually this year.

LANCASTER, Pa. — Evelyn Coston, a Clare House resident says, “I applied to Clare House. I was nervous, but it was like a breath of fresh air to me.”

President of Clare House, Samantha Kurtz, explains, "Clare House has been in place for 40 years and that’s what we’re celebrating this year."

This year is a big milestone for the organization that’s been helping women and their children for four decades. 

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, Clare House was unable to hold its Springtime fundraiser. This year the fundraiser will be virtual and Clare House needs your help. 

Kurtz says, “We have helped hundreds if not thousands of families individually.”

 “We work to create individualized goal plans with them and that can look like a variety of different goals that the clients set, and we try to provide the tools, the resources, the connections, the support that they really need to accomplish those things," Kurtz added.

Coston says, “They changed my mindset on being a parent. They changed my mindset when it comes to money. They showed me how to budget, how to save money.”

Clare House is working on building up women who may be struggling but are ready to take the next step. 

Kurtz says, “They’re really signing up to commit themselves towards working on these specific goals, and engaging with our staff and support, to work towards sort of their long term success.”

Coston adds, “They gave me hope. They encouraged me every day with things like ‘This is what it is now, but this is not the end.’ They helped me to love me. I felt like that was the push that I needed.”

While donations have been surprisingly steady during these uncertain times, Clare House did have to make some big changes.

Kurtz explains, “What we have done just like many other organizations, we sort of held off on that and we really pivoted because this year we have something to really celebrate and mark. And that’s that 40th celebration, that we’ve been in the community for 40 years, we opened in 1980.”

In less than 2 weeks, Clare House will be holding its annual fundraiser, virtually. The event kicks off on Facebook Live at 6 PM on September 30th.