Homeless & Housing,
Housing & Shelter,
Mental Health Disorders
Mission: The Barrett Foundation was founded in 1985 by Brother Mathias Barrett who was known as the friend of the homeless. Having seen an increase in women and families in his soup kitchen, he founded an emergency shelter that would serve the needs of these women and their children on a short-term basis. Barrett House was the first program of the Barrett Foundation and continues to serve women and their children by providing the basic necessities of life.
It became clear that the number of women living on the streets, suffering from mental illness, was staggering. In response to this need, the Barrett Foundation founded Casa Milagro (House of Miracles), which serves as a residential shelter care program to teach women how to manage their mental illness and live independent lives. The program has been very successful in its approach. Services provided include an art therapy program and an AfterCare component.
In 1996, the organization contracted with the City of Albuquerque to provide transitional housing for non-disabled single women as well as women with children. The Bridges to Independent Living program is based on an intensive case management model, with weekly visits at the home of the client, life skills classes, and strict adherence to program guidelines.
In 1999, Casa Verde was founded which provides permanent, affordable housing options to "graduates" of Casa Milagro. Often times, when clients live the program, they are dependent on subsidized housing or Section 8 in order to afford an apartment. This type of setting does not allow our women to live in close proximity to one another in order to provide much needed support. The organization purchased a 16-unit apartment complex that will eventually be self-governed by the women and that is meant to restore dignity and provide a support system for women with chronic mental illness.
The Barrett Foundation also provides employment and training opportunities through its two thrift stores. The stores provide much needed operating funds for all of the organization's programs.
In 2005, the organization added Casa Socorro, a permanent supportive housing program for chronically homeless women.
The mission of the Barrett Foundation is as follows:
"To provide housing and supportive services in a caring and compassionate manner to homeless women and children who are striving to break the cycle of homelessness."