As a federally funded housing project, St. Margaret’s House is subject to the labyrinth of regulations of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These regulations cover a wide range of topics – from applicant eligibility requirements to physical plant inspections and everything in between. In fact, HUD publishes a handbook of over 1,000 pages filled with all of the expectations for housing mangers to follow, all to ensure that we are providing our residents a “decent, safe, and sanitary” living environment.
But those of us with “boots on the ground” know that what makes a building a home cannot be quantified by government rules or limited funding. Yes, our team works every day to make St. Margaret’s House decent, safe and sanitary housing for our senior and disabled population – clean hallways and common areas, 24/7 manned security at the front desk, timely response to maintenance issues – but we have a responsibility and an obligation to do much more.
We are intentional in creating a place for our residents to enjoy playing card games and mahjong with friends, celebrate holidays, express their talents in art and dance, and build relationships with neighbors. There are many benches both inside and out for a favorite pastime: people watching. The calming sounds of the water features fill the atrium. Our front desk security personnel are second to none in striking a balance of safety and friendliness for residents and visitors alike.
Our doors are always open to share a laugh, listen to a concern, or offer comfort. We fondly remember those we’ve lost and always encourage and foster new connections. Respect and compassion don’t require anything more than an understanding of the difference we can make to the people we serve. St. Margaret’s House is more than its regulations and inspections; for our residents it is home.