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North of Chicago, the Lake County AIDS Housing Project began looking for a site to establish a transitional living facility for people with AIDS in the mid-1990s. Citing a study conducted by the Chicago-based Alexian Brothers Health Services, nearly two-thirds of the people living with AIDS in Lake County also suffered from problems with substance abuse.
Despite local prejudice and protests, The Alexian Brothers once again forged ahead to establish The Harbor: a renovated, 122-year-old Georgian-style house in Waukegan, Illinois. Opening its doors in 1998, the house would serve as a transitional living facility to accommodate eight adults living with AIDS.
Modeled after Bonaventure House, The Harbor provides a structured and supportive living environment with 24/7 staffing, single furnished private rooms, a family room, physical fitness equipment, a learning center, and more.
Linked to established professional resources in the community such as Catholic Charities, Lake County Health Department/Community Health Center, Capt. James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center, and NICASA (Northern Illinois Council Against Substance Abuse), The Harbor provides off-site services for both primary medical care and HIV/AIDS case management. The Harbor manages our Transitional Living Program and is the only licensed recovery home for people with HIV/AIDS in Lake County.
- Have a diagnosis of HIV/AIDS
- Be homeless or at risk of homelessness
- Be under the care of a primary care physician, with a negative TB skin test or chest x-ray
- Be willing to abide by the policies of the Resident Handbook, including the Tier System, and be willing to contribute a social service fee (30% of income and/or benefits - having no income is not a barrier to admission)
- Be capable of living in a diverse, transitional, congregate community setting
- Be interested in and capable of returning to independent living in the community within 2 years.
- If in recovery, have 90 days of substantiated clean time, and be committed to remaining alcohol and drug free
- If diagnosed with mental health issues, be under the care of a psychiatrist - and, if indicated, see a counselor and/or adhere to psychotropic medication regimen
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