DAVENPORT — Sandy Walters, executive director of Humility of Mary Housing Inc., is the 2009 recipient of the CHM Peace and Justice Award.
She will receive the award during a ceremony that begins at 7 p.m. Friday, June 26, at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Bettendorf.
The Congregation of the Humility of Mary (CHM) is recognizing Walters “for her lifelong mission to care for those in need.”
Based in Davenport, the Sisters of the Humility of Mary are committed to work for justice within the human family, especially the poor and those in need.
The award is given to a deserving woman who is not widely recognized and is committed to the same goals. Like the Sisters, Walters has been “attentive to the spirit in the signs of the times,” a news release states.
“She is tireless in her work for justice, especially in relation to services for children and families in need.”
A founding director of both the Christian Family Care Center for battered women in Rock Island, Ill., and of the Salvation Army Quad-City Family Service Center in Davenport, Walters has been associated with the Sisters of Humility nearly 20 years.
She was the founding director of Humility of Mary Housing, Inc. (HMHI) established in 1990, and a founding co-director of Humility of Mary Shelter, Inc. (HMSI) begun in 2008.
With this award, the Sisters acknowledge that she has contributed significantly to the success of these agencies:
Humility of Mary Housing Inc.
The Sisters founded Humility of Mary Housing Inc. (HMHI) in Davenport in response to an unmet need: the lack of adequate housing for single parents. In 1990 it was incorporated with one four-plex that housed four young mothers and their children; the director’s office was in the basement. Today HMHI has 49 affordable transitional and permanent housing units in 16 different locations scattered throughout the city. HMHI serves approximately 100 families each year, including about 200 children. More than four times that number of referrals are received each year. Homelessness remains a reality for many.
HMHI is a supportive and structured living program in which parents have goals to increase education and job training so they will be able to secure housing and to support themselves and their children. In addition to the housing, for which each participant pays rent based on income, the families are also assisted with supportive services including weekly meetings for the parents with professional social workers, budgeting consultation, tutoring, group meetings, job training and a food pantry and clothes closet.
Humility of Mary Shelter Inc.
In September 2008, HMHI responded to the need to reopen the local homeless shelter formerly operated by John Lewis Community Services. After in-depth dialogue, community input and planning, the congregation leadership gave its approval and Humility of Mary Shelter Inc. (HMSI) was incorporated.
HMSI serves single men and women who are homeless by providing them with a safe atmosphere and supportive services to develop into more independent members of the community.
Services provided include:
• Emergency shelter for single men and women with 70 beds: 37 for men, 16 for women and 17 for veterans.
• Permanent housing for chronically homeless individuals.
• Permanent supportive housing and transitional living for homeless individuals with disabilities.
•Transitional housing for homeless veterans.
Previous recipients of the Peace and Justice Award have been: Lourdes Cottingham, Luz Bazan Gutierrez, Sister Pat Scherer, LaMetta Wynn, Elizabeth Loescher, Bonnie Neumeier, Janine Pease-Windy Boy, Donna Jean Henderson, Carolyn Uhlenhake, Ella Hartman and Justine Merritt.