The St. Joseph’s Carmelite Home in East Chicago has been helping troubled youth and teens in Northwest Indiana for over 100 years. The organization has grown tremendously since its inception, now offering a variety of special programs to the children who live there.


One of the most impactful programs at the Carmelite Home is the Independent Living Program that is provided to girls aged 15 – 18. This program teaches the teenage girls skills that are vital to every day success once they leave the home.


These skills include personal hygiene, relationship management, grammar, etiquette, financial literacy and career planning. Not only do these lessons help the participants, they improve the city of East Chicago by helping to create more responsible and knowledgeable adults.


These lessons are carried out through counseling, assessments, tutoring, individual work plans and goal setting. The girls have several adults who work with the program to serve as resources to them while they are learning.


In addition to receiving lessons, the program participants go on trips, which not only give the girls a new perspective, but also help them to become excited about learning. They take trips to restaurants to practice public etiquette, colleges to learn about options after high school and museums for educational purposes.


According to the Sisters at the home, the girls are usually very excited to participate in the program. Many of them come from situations where they have not received opportunities to learn, plan for the future, take trips and be independent.


The Independent Living Program is made possible through grants, like that from the Foundations of East Chicago (FEC), and individual donations, which can be contributed here. The Sisters are always in need of funds for books, computers and online courses for the girls.


To learn more about how the Carmelite Home helps the youth of East Chicago, visit


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