Providence Hospitality House bids farewell to longtime leader

May 24, 2005


CONTACT: Jennifer Roseman, Director of Communications & Development
(509) 474-2395 or (509) 994-5032

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Providence Hospitality House can accommodate three mothers and up to eight children at a time. It provides emergency shelter plus basic food and clothing, medical, legal, employment and housing referral services, advocacy services through the aid of volunteers, and a friendly, supportive, family like atmosphere during the family’s time of crisis. The families and team members form a community. Guests stay an average of 30 to 45 days to allow time for them to learn basic skills and move towards independence.

God’s Providence is at the center of this ministry, Sister Bea says. Donations and the support of the Sisters of Providence provided the house. The generosity of donors brings household staples, fresh vegetables and dairy products, homemade goodies and clothing.

“We live off what we have,” she says, explaining that what’s for dinner depends on what is donated. Partnerships with Seattle University and other educational institutions, plus the work of facilitators who volunteer to help teach various life skills, aid the families in growing and learning.

“One of the gifts I brought was knowing high school and college students I had worked with in Urban Plunge who wanted to learn about the inner city,” Sister Bea says. About 35 students a quarter, in two after-school shifts, have become “the backbone of the evening program” at Providence Hospitality House.

The new director, Megan McArthur, began volunteering at Providence Hospitality House while she was a student at Seattle University in 1998 with a B.A. in ecological studies. She received the university’s top service award in 1997-98.

She has been co-director of outdoor ministries at the Catholic Youth Organization in Seattle since December 2002. Other work experience includes serving as administrative assistant of young adult programs at the Intercommunity Peace and Justice Center and as outdoor education director at Camp Fire USA in Snohomish County.