Maria House Project is a drug and alcohol counseling and recovery facility for men. We also house men released from correctional facilities that are in need of a new way of life.
Its philosophy and programs reflect the dignity of men and supports them in claiming their own power. These men are encouraged to make choices that are appropriate for them, to develop personal responsibility, and to live independently in permanent housing and to achieve their full potential.
Several years ago, Fr. James Peterson, of the Diocese of Erie, PA, recognized the need for emergency housing and counseling for men with addictions. He brought this need to the attention of the Diocese of Erie. The Diocese agreed that there was a pressing need and that this was a project worthy of their joint effort.
"Opening Doors" & "Maria House" began after determining the need and developing the concept of what they wanted to do, Fr. Peterson decided to form a nonprofit charitable corporation. Maria House Project was incorporated, and tax-exempt status was obtained. Maria House Project became a collaborative effort between the city and the private sector.
Shortly after the inception of Maria House Project, staff quickly realized that it was difficult to serve both the homeless and addicted populations under the same roof at Maria House. They were seeking to have their basic needs of food and shelter and counseling met.
In addition, Maria House Project receives many calls from those who need assistance and shelter but are not always appropriate for a transitional housing program.
Fortunately, the same group of men that committed the seed money to start Maria House Project wanted to work collaboratively on a project that would benefit some of the neediest people in the tri-state area. As they made contact with other persons and agencies in the Erie area, they realized how clearly our community needed another home.