Community Education Digest
December 2017
Welcome to our Community Education Digest! The aim of Ozone House's Community Education Digest newsletter is to connect our community's resources and services with the youth and families who need them most. Each month, the Community Education Digest highlights an Ozone House program along with related resources in our community. Many of these resources can also be found in the Ozone House Info Cards shown below. 

This month we highlight our Crisis Line.

Ozone House Crisis Line
Katie Foss
Resources for Youth in our Community
The Education Project
Need Ozone House materials?

24 hour Crisis Line

Ozone House offers resources and support to youth 24/7 through our crisis line, 734-662-2222. No matter what time of day, anyone can call our crisis line and have the opportunity to talk with a trained crisis line counselor. Whether you are in crisis or you know of someone who is, our crisis line is available to you. We are here to listen and make plan. If you know of anyone who would respond yes to one of the following questions, please call our crisis line to make a safety plan.
  • Have you thought about hurting yourself or suicide?
  • Are you unsafe at home?
  • Have you run away?
  • Are you homeless?
  • Have you been kicked out?
  • Has someone hurt you before?
  • Have you hurt yourself?
  • Are you scared?
  • Have you had sex for money or a place to stay, food, or anything of value?
  • Did you ever work or do something illegal and someone else got money because of your work or your act?
  • Are you experiencing family conflict?
  • Is something else bothering you?
Crisis Line counselors will help a young person get access to food and shelter, or direct them to a safe place to hang out. Our goal is to connect folks to resources and make a safety plan. Please remember the crisis line is available even when other resources are not. The crisis line is supported by 24/7, 365 days a year, even during holidays.  
Meet Jessica Stephenson

Jessica joined Ozone House this November as the new Education Project Coordinator.  In her role, she assists the Education Project Manager with providing services to students experiencing unstable living situations and homelessness. With a passion for helping others, Jessica is dedicated to assisting and finding adequate resources for youth in their pursuit of success. Jessica received her undergraduate degree in in Political Science and Afro-American and African Studies from the University of Michigan. Her experience spans from advocating for social justice policies to educational outreach and crisis intervention. As someone who has overcome adversity, she hopes to motivate, inspire, and empower youth to be and do their best despite circumstances. Jessica truly believes that just being a part of Ozone House can change youth, families and even her life, for the better. She excited to be part of the Ozone family.

When Jessica is not working, she is living her best life and spending time with her partner and dog Blu. She enjoys going to concerts, festivals, anything involving listening to music and reading or writing poetry. or call the Education Project 734-994-8100 x1518
Resources for Youth in our Community

Holiday Meals and Events

Food Gatherers
Food Gatherers will offer meals on Christmas Day at the Delonis Center at 312 W. Huron Street near downtown Ann Arbor. The meal will be served from 3 p.m. until 4 p.m. There are no eligibility restrictions for this meal. For more information call (734) 761-2796 or visit

Faith in Action
A hot Christmas meal will be provided at 1 p.m. Christmas Day at the Our Savior Lutheran Church, located at 1515 S. Main St. in Chelsea. The meal will be provided in a congregate setting and is intended for low income and homeless individuals or families. For more information call (734) 475-3305 or visit

Breakfast at St. Andrew's
Volunteers serve a free breakfast to guests from the parish hall of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church at 306 North Division in Ann Arbor. The breakfast is available 365 days a year, including Christmas and New Year's Day. Breakfast is served from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. For more information call 734-663-0518 ext. 206 or visit


Scared Plants- Holiday Conservatory Exhibit

  Focusing on plants in our conservatory collection, the holiday exhibit explores how certain plants figure in myth, lore and ritual for cultures around the world.   The exhibit will be at the Mattaei Botanical Gardens, 1800 N.Dixboro Ann Arbor.  Open December 1-30 from 10a-4: 30p. This annual winter/holiday event also features seasonal flowers, decorated trees, kids activities, holiday items in the Garden Store and more. This event is free. Note the exhibit is  closed Dec. 24-25.


Magical Christmas Village  

A magical display of Milt Campbell's huge collection of Department 56 villages. This collection was traditionally seen in the windows of Huron Camera in downtown Dexter throughout the holiday season, and was a favorite destination for families. The village is December 9, 10, 27, 28 from 6-8pm at Historic Gordon Hall,
8341 Island Lake Rd, Dexter. Suggested donation: $5/adults.

Wayne County Holiday Light Fest

Visit the Wayne County Lightfest, 7651 Merriman Rd, Westland, for a fun drive through light display. Then stop at the Santa Shelter at the end to see Santa and buy some refreshments. This event cost $5/ car. They are open 7-10p on Mondays-Fridays and 6-10p on Saturdays and Sundays. They are open through December 31 (closed on Christmas Day). Note the Santa Shelter is only open through December 23.

The Washtenaw County Office of Community & Economic Development (OCED) and the Shelter Association of Washtenaw County (SAWC) announce the opening of winter warming centers for those experiencing homelessness during severe cold weather.

Jointly funded for the fourth year by the City of Ann Arbor and Washtenaw County and lead by SAWC; the 2017/2018 winter weather response provides expanded winter shelter services for the homeless.
Expanded services include an:
  • overnight warming center at the Delonis Center from 7pm - 7am accommodating up to 50 people in the shelter's dining room and common areas; and 
  • daytime warming centers at area churches that will be available to the homeless population throughout the winter.
A current list of daytime center locations and hours are available  here.

For individuals needing to escape adverse cold conditions (real or wind chill air temperature at 20 degrees or below) before continuing on their destination; temporary weather havens are also available. These sites are for all Washtenaw County residents and will be activated when the weather reaches extreme temperatures, requiring public school closings. A current list of weather haven locations and hours are available  here. 

The Washtenaw County Office of Community & Economic Development is committed to ensuring that all Washtenaw County residents are protected during severe weather conditions.

The Education Project Updates
Holiday gifts are being distributed through the week of December 22nd. If you are working with McKinney-Vento students that did not receive a gift, please reach out to the Education Project as we have some additional supports that we may be able to provide in the New Year. 

*As a reminder, please continue to complete referrals for any students who may be experiencing housing instability to your district Liaison or the Education Project.  

Below is the updated referral for the 2017 - 2018 school year! Please use this referral when working with students and families this school year. Any questions about the new referral can be directed to

Click here to obtain a copy:  

The referral is intended to be filled out by school staff or community partners with the students or families in need of support. Once a referral is completed, the information should be shared with the Education Project staff as well as the Local Liaison. 


The Education Project, sometimes known as the Education Project for Homeless Youth, is designed to ensure that students experiencing homelessness or unstable living situations enroll, regularly attend, and succeed in school.  Under the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act, students who are homeless must have equal access to free and appropriate public education

The Education Project works closely with Liaisons in the school districts, Allies within each school, community partners, and families to identify and serve all youth affected by homelessness. 

Frequently Asked Questions about the Education Project

Who is Homeless?
Homelessness does not always look like a family living in a car or on the street; it exists in many different versions. The primary criteria we consider are: Is their housing Fixed? Is it Regular? And is it Adequate?

Fixed: Is it permanent or not subject to change? For example, is the person staying somewhere that they have a right to live? Are they not on the lease? Could they be asked to leave?
Regular: Are they staying the same place every night? Do they have to switch locations frequently?
Adequate: Is the residence sufficient? Do youth staying in the home have a bed to sleep in? Are there health risks and unsanitary conditions in the home? Does it meet the physical and psychological needs of a child?
Although we all hope that homelessness is very temporary, it can be a perpetual experience for many families and unaccompanied youth. It is important to ask these questions and understand each family and youth's situation.
How can I access the Education Project?
The education project is housed in the Washtenaw Intermediate School District. The website is  Here you can find information about who is eligible for McKinney-Vento services, what services are offered and additional links and supports around youth homelessness and education.
How can I help?
The Education Project relies on a combination of grant support from the state and donations from members of the community. Many of the items provided to families, like toiletries and school supplies, are supplied through donations. This allows the Education Project the ability to fund other school related expenses like field trips, sports/activities, tutoring services and temporary transportation for students. Additionally, the program is always looking for volunteers to help pack up supplies for youth as well as deliver supports to schools within the districts. By having a team of volunteers ready to disperse supplies, EPHY will serve families more effectively. Click here to learn about ways you can help:   The Education Project Volunteer Flyer
The Education Project office is staffed regularly Monday - Thursday from 9am - 3:30pm. 

Any questions regarding a young person's McKinney-Vento status and the supports available can be direct to, or by phone at (734) 994-8100 x1518.

If you know a youth or family who could benefit from Ozone House services,
please have them call our 24-hour Crisis Line:


There is always somebody here to listen. 
Need More Information About Ozone House?
Ozone House Poster

We will come to you!  
We provide educational presentations to middle and high school classrooms or assemblies, as well as organizations throughout Washtenaw County.
To order free printed education materials, or to schedule a presentation, 
contact Dawn Espy at 
call (734) 994-8100 x1518

Ozone House INFO Card

Ozone House Outreach Card
Ozone House Outreach Card

To learn more about all of our crisis intervention, housing or support services,  or to get involved with Ozone House,  please visit our website at