GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) — Friday was the first time the public could see the interior of Amanda’s House, an installation co-founded by Paula Jolly.
The struggle that Jolly’s daughter endured with addiction led her down this path.
“I know a lot of people don’t believe it, but it’s a brain disease. A chronic brain disease,” Jolly said of the addiction. She is executive director of Amanda’s House and the Mandolin Foundation.
Amanda’s House is transitional housing for women struggling with their mental health or struggling with addiction. It is located in a former church at the intersection of Webster Ave and Day St.
It can accommodate up to eight women and is said to be the only facility north of Milwaukee that allows children to stay with their mothers.
“Some days are really tough. Like today was tough because she was supposed to be here with me doing this,” Jolly said as she burst into tears.
Amanda Lynn Marcouiller died on February 10, 2020 of an overdose at the age of 37. Jolly says her daughter was introduced to painkillers in 2010 when she injured herself playing football.
Her spirit lives on in the home as volunteers provide women with access to resources before it’s too late.
“She would relapse and it was a 10-year cycle. I really and truly feel if she would have had a place to go. A supportive place to go, maybe she would always be with us,” Jolly said.
During Friday’s open house. there were exhibits of victims of drug addiction.
“Unfortunately, the black squares are the ones who lost their battle with addiction,” said Amanda Johnson, volunteer and Mandolin Foundation board member. She showed a traveling quilt that showed people recovering, those who died of drug addiction and others convicted of related crimes.
The women pay monthly rent at Amanda’s House and they can only stay there for up to two years in an effort to make them independent.
“At the end of the day, it’s about the women here, so we want to provide them with a family environment. As you can see, it’s really not institutionalized,” Johnson said.
Amanda’s House is currently collecting donations to build a shower to house twice as many women. It will cost them between $10,000 and $12,000.
If you’d like to help, here’s a link to Amanda’s House website: https://www.mandolinfoundationllc.com/donate
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