The House of Ruth
"Where women will experience God´s healing love and begin to live beyond their past."
In June of 2007 B.I.R.D. Ministries opened The House of Ruth, a Christ -centered long term residential program for women released from prison. The House of Ruth offers the women a safe structured protected environment to love, nurture and encourage them. The home structure provides daily living that supports and encourages Christian principles, accountability, responsibility, respect and consistency. Group support and one on one counseling sessions with a licensed counselor are utilized to develop, maintain and enhance the healing journey to wholeness. Activities are designed to minister to the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of the residents. Resident House Managers provide onsite supervision and accountability.
The program requires a minimum (12) month in house residency. Acceptance into the program is contingent on a person’s desire to change and willingness to accept guidance and direction. Residents must adhere to the principles and activities that form the foundation for life change and recovery.
It is our prayer that while at the House of Ruth each woman will learn to walk in the life transforming power of Christ. Being empowered to go forward to experience the sure and certain answers to life's challenges found only in Christ.
Meeting the Need
Every week, women are released into our communities from Lancaster County Prison. Many are not prepared to meet the innumerable challenges facing them. They are at high risk to adopt or return to negative behaviors that will lead them back into a cycle of prison, addiction and abuse. Unless these women receive the support, encouragement and nurture of a safe structured environment they face a bleak future and an increased risk of returning to prison.
House of Ruth is operated by B.I.R.D. Ministries and is a community for women in recovery from a cycle of prison, addiction and abuse. The mission of House of Ruth is to provide sanctuary along with an array of support services and educational opportunities for women caught in a destructive cycle of incarceration.
The Vision of House of Ruth:Women growing individually and collectively, while living in community.
We seek to empower women by:
- Providing a safe, Christ centered home environment;
- Helping residents to live honest, sober, and self-sufficient lives;
- Providing educational and vocational opportunities;
- Fostering self-understanding through personal and spiritual growth;
- Providing life-skill building and maintenance education;
- Offering opportunities to work in a therapeutic work environment with "Light on a Hill."
The Organized Program Will Include:
- Personal and group Bible Study;
- One on one and group counseling;
- Regular church attendance and participation in church related activities;
- Woman to Woman Mentoring and Discipleship;
- Life Skills Educational classes and activities;
- Drug and Alcohol Counseling and Recovery group meetings;
Through a network of resources, from social services to faith-based ministries and churches, our community reentry case management will connect the women with the service and support they need to address their family issues, obtain permanent housing and employment, continue their education, complete drug and alcohol treatment and establish consistent physical and mental health care.
Apply to Join the House With These Forms
Print copy, complete, and mail to 739 Spruce Road, New Holland, PA 17557
- House of Ruth Application106.81 K | 9/4/2015
Frequently Asked Questions:
How long do the women live at the house?
The women are asked to make a commitment of one year. In that year there are three phases of growth that they work through. If they choose to stay for a second year they will be developing leadership skills and interning in a leadership training opportunity. Progression through the phases is determined by each resident's longevity in the program, adherence to program policies and procedures, active participation in community life, and movement through those steps required to reach her personal growth, education and employment goals.
Where do the women go after they leave?
Some go on to housing of their own or with family in the community.
Do the women work?
Yes, if they are able. Working helps them prepare for living independently in the community. With the establishment of Light on a Hill the women can all now work in a safe, creative workplace with hours that are flexed around their healing and recovery schedules.
How do you determine who will come to live at the house?
Application to the house is voluntary. The application process includes an interview and review by a committee. Women who have expressed a desire to live in a Christ centered home and have participated in B.I.R.D. Ministries pre-release program at Lancaster County Prison get first consideration.
Where does the money come from to support the ministry and the House of Ruth?
Funding consists primarily of donations from individuals, businesses, churches, community groups and organizations. Applications for funding in the form of grant requests are also submitted regularly.
How many women will be living at the house?
We can house up to five women.
Will children be living at the house?
Children can come to visit and stay overnight. We are not equipped or structured for the children to live at the house full-time.
What are some of the needs that people can help with at the house?
We are always in need of household supplies ,office equipment such as computers, copiers and miscellaneous office supplies. There is always a need for volunteers to help with transportation, the upkeep of the grounds and building as well as a variety of other work projects. If you are interested in helping in any of these areas or have a suggestion of how you would like to help please let us know. For more information, view our Programs page to view our mentoring program or visit the Support Us page.