The public got a sneak peek at Hannah’s House during an open house Thursday afternoon. The supervised visitation and exchange home located at 445 N. Sandusky Ave., Upper Sandusky, will open Sept. 1.
“This is a dream come true,” Hannah’s House Executive Director Misty Droll said. “I’m glad to be able to help the community and provide a service that is so needed.”
Hannah’s House is a non-profit safe home-like setting for supervised visitation and exchanges with children.
“Clients can come in court-appointed, referrals from attorneys or they can just come in voluntarily on their own for exchanges or supervised visits if they want,” Droll said.
“My work with (Court Appointed Special Advocates), which I have done for the last several years, has shown me how hard it is for families in crisis going through difficult situations to get along sometimes,” she added. “There is such a need for something like this in a small community because they were having to go out of county for this service. They were having to go to Tiffin and for families that are already in crisis and with the cost of gas to get there and a lot of them don’t even have cars to be able to get there, there was just such a need in this community to take the burden off of those that are already in crisis.”
Hannah’s House is set up like a home, with couches, chairs and toys throughout. There also is a fully-equipped kitchen.
“I think the house is beautiful,” said Janine Miller-Delaney, a clinical counselor with Upper Sandusky Counseling and Life Coaching who attended the open house. “I like that it’s homey and I like that it’s just very inviting for kids. When parents are in that kind of situation where the kids need to be meeting at some kind of supervised house, I think being able to have a safe place where everybody feels comfortable is really important, instead of something that feels more sterile or business-like.”
Hannah’s House staff and board of directors greeted the public during the open house and led tours through the facility.
“We’re very excited about what Misty is doing,” Upper Sandusky Mayor Scott Washburn said. “This has been a need in Wyandot County for a long time. Misty is a great person from a great family and we are really excited about this opportunity in the city.”
Washburn is a member of the Hannah’s House Board of Directors, along with Upper Sandusky businessmen Chad Baker and Scott Dickey, attorney Kelle Saull, Upper Sandusky Police Officer Drew Ruse, local resident Kristi Swartz and CASA Coordinator Louanne Hufford.
“There has been a longtime need for a home and visitation center in this area,” said Hufford, who is president of the Hannah’s House Board of Directors. “We’ve talked about it, dreamed about it and Misty just made it happen. It was truly a lot of blood, sweat and tears to make this house a home for kids so that they can visit with their parents and other relatives in a home-like environment. This is so necessary in this community. It’s less sterile, it’s user-friendly and this is such a great thing for this community and for the county.
“We invite people to come and visit and see what a great thing Hannah’s House can be and is,” Hufford added. “We hope it becomes a well-used facility.”
For more information about Hannah’s House, call 419-209-0020 or send an email to email@example.com.
By CHANDA NEELY