Our Community Health and Wellness Program heals bodies and minds.
Basic medical, dental and eye care, as well as mental health treatment, are an urgent priority for every woman and child who enters Lotus House. Lack of affordable mental health care and medical services are among the most critical issues to be addressed in truly breaking the cycle of homelessness. Virtually all of the women accepted into the Lotus House suffer from untreated medical conditions, mental health issues, or both upon entry. In some cases, such as those suffering from cancer or other severe medical conditions requiring prolonged treatment, medical issues are the principal reason for entry. In some cases, those lacking access to medical and mental health treatment have turned to substances as a form of self medication or to simply escape, further complicating the long road back to health and well being. Too often, we see first-hand the consequences of inadequate health care in those who cannot see or read properly, are afraid to smile because of missing teeth, or worse still, cannot eat the food we provide because they desperately need dentures. If a woman is not healthy, balanced and stable, we know her chances of successfully accomplishing her goals for a safe, secure and stable permanent home and life for herself and her children are greatly diminished.
With a body, mind and spirit paradigm, Lotus House strives to address the medical and mental health needs of the women and children at Lotus House in holistic ways that are both supportive and empowering. In addition to offering basic health and mental health care, evidence-based and informed counseling, and education, our programming embraces alternative therapies and pathways to healing, health and wellbeing.
Lotus House works closely with each woman and child to address their individual medical and mental health needs in a comprehensive fashion, providing them with the stability essential to making positive changes in their lives on every level. Health and Wellness Coordinators at Lotus House coordinate linkages for each woman and child for basic medical and wellness exams (including through Lotus Wellness Center), eye exams and glasses if needed, and dental care, as well as mental health assessments. For women who are homeless and pregnant, prenatal care, parenting classes, and early infant medical care and screening are arranged in cooperation with community health providers, to ensure our moms and babies are healthy and happy as they begin their new lives together. Together with Lotus Wellness Center LLC, Lotus House arranges over 2,000 appointments and health care linkages annually to further body, mind and spirit health and well being.
Additional health and wellness programming includes classes, educational seminars and guest lectures by trained instructors and community partners on topics such as healthy lifestyles, good nutrition, stress reduction and relaxation techniques, and the importance of exercise. Yoga, pilates, acupuncture, Body Talk and meditation are offered weekly. And depending on the weather, the Lotus walking club can be seen stretching in the garden or striding in unison through the streets of Overtown!
To assist women and children in addressing mental health issues including trauma, Lotus House arranges screenings, assessments and treatment for the women and children it shelters in cooperation with a comprehensive network of community providers and pays for medications as needed to support their mental health and well being. Lotus House offers on-site, personalized counseling in a trauma-informed setting to every woman, through an experienced clinical staff of social workers and mental health counselors. Infant mental health screenings, individual child therapy, dyadic therapy and parenting education are provided by a licensed clinical psychologist on staff, who heads up our Child and Family Services Program. Weekly individual counseling and resource coordination by counselors gives each woman an opportunity to address her personal issues and needs for healing and growth. Women also participate in group counseling, including the nationally recognized, evidence-based interventions of Seeking Safety, Say It Straight, and for those with children, Nurturing Skills for Parents. Support groups offered three times weekly help women with substance abuse histories maintain abstinence and continue their recovery. A weekly Rainbow Lotus Group supports the special needs of our LBTQ sisters. Learn more about our evidence-based and informed counseling in Understanding the Need, Solutions, and Program Design in our For Women Only Program, Maternity Program, Child and Family Services Program and Youth/Teens Program.
At Lotus House, sculpture invites our contemplation in the gardens and the walls of our buildings are graced with contemporary art by and about women, inspiring us to explore our shared humanity and see the world in new and different ways. We delight in and discover many alternative pathways to healing and growth through individual creative expression and shared experiences. We understand that art in many forms – visual, sound, movement, and words – is integral to giving voice to the spirit that has survived by being invisible. Women and children at Lotus House are invited to attend theater performances and participate in monthly music concerts, dance workshops, visual arts classes, knitting/sewing circles, “poetry and tea,” story telling, holiday events, “fun days,” field trips and more. Our volunteers and community partners assist in offering the rich and colorful array of activities at the shelter, each providing a unique opportunity to explore the world, our community and ourselves through art and nature. In the process, we are reminded of our profound interconnectedness and the extraordinary capacity of the human spirit to heal, grow and blossom against all odds. We are all enriched with the fruit of their potential realized.
Nurturing body, mind and spirit, Lotus House utilizes a holistic approach to supporting, empowering and inspiring women and children in need. Your support makes all that we do possible.