H.O.P.E. Brings Healing With Transitional Housing To Clinton


When she was growing up, Brooklyn Timmons didn’t know what it was like to have supportive parents, her own bedroom or even her own bed. Her family moved frequently, she said, mostly living in motels, and were addicts.
Brooklyn doesn’t have a place she thinks of as a hometown, but had lived in Clinton for three years and was in an abusive relationship when she was sentenced to the Henry County Jail. It was after Amanda Roe visited her in jail to bring the message of Celebrate Recovery that Brooklyn changed her mind about staying in Clinton.
Brooklyn is now a graduate of the H.O.P.E. project, a faith-based traditional housing project for women who need a place to start over. An acronym for “Healing, Overcoming, Persevering and Empowering,” H.O.P.E. was started by Amanda Roe, who had struggled with addiction herself.
“When I got free of it, I felt called to the Henry County Jail to bring Celebrate Recovery to the inmates,” Amanda said. “I saw these women beginning to transform their lives.
“Then I would see them leave the jail and knew that without the right environment and support, they would not last long.”
Celebrate Recovery is a Christ-centered 12-step program similar to AA that offers a way to overcome addictive behavior. It started at a church in California in 1991, and is now offered in 42 prison systems in the United States and worldwide.
Amanda said she didn’t have a lot of money, but what she did have was the conviction that this is what God wanted her to do. She started in 2015 by leasing part of a house with one apartment, and then “space just opened up,” she said.
“He gave me the vision,” Amanda said. “There was a ‘God-step’ in everything that happened. “
Darren Huey, who has been overseeing the conversion of a former church building on Ohio Street into transitional housing for men, is where Amanda was nine years ago. Called the Men’s Discipleship Center, it is scheduled to open in two weeks, Darren said, and has beds for 10 men. Those spaces have already been filled, he said.
Amanda said H.O.P.E. Project started out serving five women and has grown to offer facilities for 21 women plus 10 children at three houses in Clinton and one in Calhoun.
The Calhoun house is where Brooklyn lives with her three daughters, who she got back after going through the program. Brooklyn entered H.O.P.E. Project housing in October of 2022 and graduated a year later, then stayed on as a house leader. She got a job at Door of Hope, and is finishing her high school equivalency, with plans to continue her education and study business management.
Christine Stachersky has an even more dramatic story. Now an activities director for a group home and writer of a weekly column for the Clinton Daily Democrat, Christine was labeled a “persistent offender,” and was facing 78 years in prison —and that’s if she served her sentences concurrently.
“I knew I had to make some changes no matter what happened,” Christine said. “I started seeking God where I was at. I just trusted no matter what happened, He had me.”
What happened: after adopting the Celebrate Recovery program, God radically changed Christine’s life, she said. Instead of custodial sentences, she got probation in all eight countries where she had convictions, and now has only one year left of probation.
“It was all because of Amanda --and God -- seeing something in me,” Christine said.
Christine came to H.O.P.E. House in July of 2022 and graduated a year later. She decided to stay on as house leader because she knew she still needed to be there. She was able to bring her dog, Rayla, with her.
A rescue dog from the Clinton Animal Shelter, Rayla is a mixed breed who is now the official project mascot of H.O.P.E. House. Rayla gives affection to all residents, Christine said, making the rounds and attending all the house meetings.
“But we never did get her a T-shirt” Amanda said.
Before she signed up for the H.O.P.E. Project, Brooklyn had just received a devotional Bible, she said, and was reading a devotional on safe houses for women, which contained the sentence “All will be well in the house of hope.”
“God pointed me here,” Brooklyn said. “It was like a big neon sign. I immediately got my application.”
Amanda also knew that God was talking to her through scripture when she heard: “You are blessed among women because you believe that God will do what He says He will do.” Amanda said she still keeps the list of things someone told her she needed, but didn’t have, to make the housing project become a reality — the houses, furnishings, dishes, etc.
Everything on the list was provided by donations from a variety of sources, Amanda said.
“I realized who had the deep pockets — Jesus,” she said.
H.O.P.E. Project residents have jobs, are required to do chores and attend Celebrate Recovery meetings, Bible studies and classes in parenting and budgeting.
“We have a lot of expectations of the residents,” Amanda said.
Because it is a faith-based project, H.O.P.E. does not receive federal grants, Amanda said, but is supported by local churches and organizations and private individuals. H.O.P.E. works in partnership with Compass Health, Mercy Tree and Door of Hope.
All of the residents get together once a week for house meetings and dinner, which is provided by a group of local volunteers. A woman named Crystal Smith started the tradition of providing the women with dinner on meeting nights, Amanda said, adding that Crystal was one of Christine’s burglary victims.
“There’s more need,” she said of transitional housing for women and men who are trying to change their lives.
H.O.P.E. Project can alway use twin-size bedding, towels, washcloths and paper products, Amanda said, as well as monetary donations. Amanda is available to speak to local groups and spread the word of H.O.P.E. Call her at 660-202-9032.