Angel House helps women get their lives back - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Angel House helps women get their lives back

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by Danielle Wagner

WATERLOO (KWWL) Angel House, a clean and sober living facility for women, opened March 15. Four days later, Bobbi Henderson moved in.

Henderson was staying at the homeless shelter after leaving an abusive relationship and seeking treatment for drug abuse. She couldn't find a place to live or get a job, and then she found out about Angel House.

"They provided a place where I could be myself and the goodness would come out. They provided that for me," said Bobbi Henderson.

Henderson is one of 11 women living at the Waterloo house. Angel House began with Executive Director Julia Baldwin. Baldwin said she also made poor choices in life, but was lucky to have a supportive family.

"I could see myself in these ladies' situation had I lost all my support system. And where would I have gone?" said Baldwin.

Baldwin said all the women choose to be at the house. It's a sort of transition house for those who completed substance abuse treatment but still need support.

Those living there must pay $220 a month in rent. They must get a job, go to school or volunteer. It's also required they attend four recovery-based meetings a week.

"By no stretch of the imagination is this simply a roof. When you come to Angel House you are making a commitment to yourself, to me and to the housemates that you are willing and ready to do something different with your life," said Julia Baldwin.

Valerie Carlyle has lived at the house four weeks, but she said this is already farther than she's gotten in her recovery after several previous attempts.

"I just kept hitting bottom and this last time hit home. I was going to lose everything. I was facing prison, violation of probation. I finally hit rock bottom," said Carlyle.

Carlyle and the other women now realize they want and deserve better for their lives. Angel House is one step in that process.

Julia Baldwin said the goal is to have the women ready to be on their own after 18 months. But they'll still be required to check in for six months after that.

Angel House is always accepting donations. For more information visit www.angelhouserh.org.

There's also a fundraiser coming up on Thursday, September 9th.

If you order from Pizza Hut that day and have a fundraiser ticket, 20 percent of your purchase goes to Angel House.

Reporter: Danielle Wagner

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