Since 2006, NeighborWorks Pocatello has owned and operated a 10-bed Spirit of Hope House, which is a clean and safe home for men transitioning from the correctional system. The home is located on North Harrison Avenue and was constructed through a collaboration with NWP, the Federal Home Loan Bank and Wells Fargo.
For the past 12 years, hundreds of men (and for a period of time women) have had an affordable place to stay while they work to find employment and more permanent housing thanks to the Spirit of Hope (SOH) House. NeighborWorks Pocatello’s Property Manager, Brian Nice, goes out of his way to assist the tenants in getting them on a successful path. He doesn’t just hand them a lease agreement and a key to the home, he does things like give them rides to job interviews, rides to see their counselors and others and helps them understand what resources are available in the community, including resources to secure and locate employment.
A 2011 study found that without steady housing it is difficult for ex-offenders to find employment. The Spirit of Hope House provides the stable housing that is needed, which in turn helps prevent homelessness or re-incarceration.
“Spirit of Hope has been a very nice place and it’s very affordable for people who are just getting out of prison and trying to get their life back on track,” said Mike, who is a current SOH tenant. “This place has been clean, nice and healthy and is relieving a lot of stress because when you get out of prison, you have a lot of stress on you.”
A transitional home like SOH can also have a big impact on an ex-offenders success in reintegrating back into the community. Jimmy, who is another recent SOH tenant says “I believe it’s been the difference between failure and success for me and I’ve succeeded this far.” He added that the SOH House has “freed me up to not have to worry about this part of it (housing). It’s freed me up to do the other things I’ve needed to do to be successful in my parole”.
NeighborWorks Pocatello works to prevent homelessness and stabilize the community in a number of ways. The Spirit of Hope House is one such way. For more information about the Spirit of Hope House, contact NWP’s Property Manager, Brian Nice at 208-232-9468.