The miracle of The House
“This place is really a miracle,” John Mok-Lamme said as he celebrated the opening of The House on Wednesday.
Mok-Lamme was referring to the series of setbacks and near-disasters that Karis Inc. overcame to open The House, the location of which is undisclosed to protect the safety of some of the teens who take shelter there.
Mok-Lamme and his board of directors and volunteers raised over $150,000 to open the shelter and cover most costs for two years.
That is a remarkable achievement given that Karis opted to move forward without federal help, which presumably will give Karis a bit more flexibility to meet the admittedly unpredictable needs of teens whose family lives are at worst nonexistent, at best problematic.
Karis’ rules seem to be pretty straightforward: Parents are to be contacted within two hours of a teen’s arrival at The House and within 48 hours a team will help the teen build a plan to become self-sufficient.
Teens need only call 424-8958 for The House.
Under Colorado law, teens can stay at the shelter for as long as three weeks and receive mental health counseling, educational counseling and medical attention from professionals and volunteers.
Mok-Lamme spoke of miracles in getting The House built. Karis, which takes its name from the Greek word for grace, had plenty of help, from an anonymous $10,000 donor to Hilltop, which stepped in to assure the completion of The House.
It’s likely though, that The House, to some young people, itself is the miracle.