Making Dreams Real mission is: To improve community integration and quality of life for adults with mental illness as well as those who are homeless, unemployed or previously incarcerated via a holistic approach that fosters strong relationships and improved self-esteem. The priority area for this project is to fight poverty by engaging those who are homeless and those who are exiting from behavioral health and incarceration facilities and who have one or more barriers and/or obstacles preventing them from escaping the cycle of poverty. This is to be accomplished by addressing these barriers such as hunger, no residential option, unemployed, mental illness, substance abuse and disabilities. The project goals are to create a data base of employers with required skill levels and acceptable disabilities with desired training. Research funding available for a supportive low-income housing development. enable the Recovery College to expand the valuable programs and activities currently underway.
Summary of Accomplishments
Making Dreams Real (MDR) planning and design was initiated in June of 2015 by Arthur Horn, previous Executive Director of Four Rivers Outreach, Inc. However, a pure recovery program for adults with mental disorders did not exist in the area. Horn then advocated and researched exclusively recovery models for adults with mental disorders, and established MDR as a Texas Non-Profit Corporation 501(c)3 organization. Vocational classes, job training and placement, including life management with assistance in procuring a residential component began for the students April 1, 2019.
Making Dreams Real is a mental health Recovery College with a summary description of all the classes offered and the Vista workers training will be on writing detailed curriculum. Recovery Colleges are prevalent in Europe, especially the UK. The Vistas will be provided contact information for these colleges and Skype or Zoom meetings set up to discuss and access their curriculum.
Making Dreams Real, Inc. was created in June of 2015 as a Texas non-profit community organization and obtained its 501c3 status in October of 2015 and the journey began. Mission Statement To improve community integration and quality of life for adults with mental illness as well as those who are homeless, unemployed or incarcerated via a holistic approach that fosters strong relationships and self-esteem. Executive Summary Making Dreams Real (MDR) planning and design was initiated five years ago by Arthur Horn, however, a recovery program for adults with mental disorders and homelessness did not exist in the area. Horn then advocated and researched exclusively recovery models for adults with mental disorders which included homelessness, addiction and unemployment and established MDR as a 501(c)3 organization. A Recovery College and Residential program is a dire need for Grayson County. In fact, individuals released from jail, emergency rooms or a behavioral health center after a mental health crisis are without a residential care option. For example, an individual with bi-polar issues was rejected by community mental health treatment centers, each stating the individual did not meet criteria. As a result, the individual attacked a family member, was arrested, and then taken to a behavioral health center. Another lady was found in the middle of a road crying- she had sought help at emergency rooms yet was turned away without assistance. Individuals released from a Behavior Health Center, must typically wait 6 weeks until outpatient care is available. The Recovery College does not have a waiting list. Dallas Police Chief, David Brown, DeKalb County Public Safety Director, Cedric Alexander, state that in the absence of mental health residential programs, police must handle mental health issues, yet officers are not equipped to do so, with the Sherman Police serving seven emergency detentions per month. In Texoma, each month, twenty people with mental health issues are exited from behavioral health centers without a place to go. In addition, another 2000 each year are jailed due to mental health issues. These individuals have a 54-percent recidivism rate, due in part to a lack of mental health residential beds in concert with a recovery program. MDR's residential plan will provide immediate access to recovery protocols for individuals who experience mental health issues, homelessness and/or crisis. As a recovery program, as opposed to treatment, the client will experience a soothing environment. The center's design is based on a holistic family setting. Peer and professional counselors facilitate the de-escalation process, thereby integrating mental health consumers into the recovery college residential center. The Community Partners of Making Dreams Real are: Grayson County College Texoma Council of Governments Greater Texoma Health Clinic Work Force Solutions Master Key Ministries -- Food Distribution Homeward Bound -- Substance Use Disorder The Refuge -- Men's Recovery House Salvation Army Grayson County College Veterans Program Woodforest Bank Texoma Medical Center Behavior Health Center Grayson County Sheriff's Office Austin College Texoma Homeless Coalition United Way Texoma Health Foundation Making Dreams Real management team consists of Arthur Horn -- Executive Director and Founder, Vicki James -- Administrative Assistance and Tommy Ellis -- Director of Career One Stop.