Hostopi Hoci provides a temporary sober respite house and supportive services for Ho-Chunk enrolled women. The living space located near Black River Falls officially opened their doors to guests on June 3, and is the first of its kind in Wisconsin.
“(Hostopi Hoci is) the first respite sober living in Wisconsin. You’re coming here for a short time before you can get into treatment. That’s what makes it different than other sober living houses,” said Paula Jolly from DarJune Foundation, Inc.
The facility offers a safe, positive place for Ho-Chunk women who are going through the intake process with the Ho-Chunk Nation’s Behavioral Health and are waiting on a bed from a treatment center or are an active addiction seeking remission.
Hostopi Hoci, meaning good gathering house, is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Recovery coaches and volunteers staff the house. Tasha King is the house manager, and staff includes Sara White Eagle, Henrietta Funmaker, and LaVerda Richter. Jesse Mann manages DarJune invoices. Shanna Harrison is a worker through the Department of Labor, and is working towards becoming a recovery coach.
“Right now we have two different types of guests,” said Tasha King. “One is on her way to treatment and she is still going through the steps.
“Our other guest has been in treatment too many times. There is a certain amount of times Behavioral Health is willing to pay for you to go. The CEO allows her to stay because it’s technically up to DarJune because we are contracted out through them right now.”
DarJune Foundation, Inc. is a non-profit out of Green Bay and has a one year contract with the Ho-Chunk Nation to get the program up and running. After the year is over, the Nation will decide if they will take over.
“We are kind of just a contractor and come every week to do face to face, phone calls, emails, and work out all of the bugs,” says DarJune Housing Supervisor and Certified Recovery Coach, Paula Jolly.
Various events took place at W8801 Black Hawk Drive before opening. November 1-3, 2018, an event called ‘A Glimmer of Hope’ took place where community members were welcomed each evening to help support those fighting against addiction. Then on January 11, volunteers gathered to paint the interior of the house. On April 13, Ho-Chunk Nation community members gathered again at Hostopi Hoci for a blessing ceremony.
Now Hostopi Hoci is open to guests and has nine beds available. Current guidelines state guests can stay a maximum of three months.
The staff hosts Women’s Recovery Meetings every Wednesday, 6-7 PM. Sara White Eagle mentions they are looking to host community events and provide activities that families can enjoy together.
Also, staff would welcome an artist to volunteer paint a mural on the living room wall. The wall is two stories in height.
Hostopi Hoci’s mission statement is to provide a safe place to encourage and support recovery by offering fellowship, structure, and positive activities to empower and educate those in recovery.
Sara White Eagle mentioned, “We are always here to talk, too.”
Hostopi Hoci’s phone number is (715) 284-0764.
Staff at Hostopi Hoci guide guests through the treatment admissions process if the guest is uncertain how to begin.
Paula Jolly said she always tells guests, “I am here to walk with you. I am not going to do it for you, but I will give you the tools. You just need to use them.”