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Frequently asked questions

  • What is Huschka House?
    Huschka House is a supportive, transitional living program for young adults at-risk for homelessness.
  • Where is the house(s) located?
    Johnson City, TN
  • Is Huschka House a 501 (c)(3)?
    Yes, we gained this status in January 2020. You can confirm our status here
  • What is the mission of HH?
    The mission of Huschka House is to provide homeless young adults in Northeast Tennessee with a safe living environment, affordable housing, and supportive services in order to ensure lifelong stability and success. Huschka House promotes equality and acceptance for all young adults.
  • What sets you apart from other organizations in your community?
    We are the only program in Northeast Tennessee that offers affordable housing as well as other support services to 18-21 year-olds at risk for homelessness.
  • What about public housing for youth aging out?
    Johnson City public housing has a grant to provide affordable housing (no support services) to youth aging out of foster care. However, youth cannot apply until their 18th birthday and are not able to move in for 2-3 months. This gap in services is part of what we want to address. Also, public housing means these youth live alone: many youth are not prepared to immediately live alone safely and successfully. Huschka House can meet the needs of aged out foster youth who need very temporary (2-3 months) or longer-term (up to 18 months) shared housing and other supportive services.
  • Doesn’t the Department of Children’s Services offer support to aging out youth?
    Yes – it’s called Extension of Foster Care. Why doesn’t that program meet their needs? This program requires youth to be successfully enrolled in higher education/training immediately after completing high school/GED. Unfortunately, not all aging out youth have the maturity or desire to immediately pursue higher education. Many need time to work and learn how to be an adult. Many also just want some independence from child welfare … yet we know they are not mature enough, nor have financial means, to handle adulting on their own yet.
  • How are residents referred to HH?
    Youth may be referred by an agency or may self-refer.
  • Can non-foster youth who are homeless or at-risk for homelessness apply?
  • Do residents pay rent?
    Yes, residents pay 25% of their gross income.
  • What else is required of residents?
    1. Employment. All residents must maintain full-time employment or part-time employment/education classes or training (minimum = 30 hours/week). 2. Education. Any resident who does not have a high school diploma or equivalent (GED) must attend high school or complete a HiSET (GED) program. Although encouraged, it is not required to attend a Post-secondary education program (college or trade school). 3. Weekly House Meetings. Attendance at weekly meetings is mandatory. 4. Chores. Each site has a list of chores that must be completed by residents daily. In addition, residents are also responsible for keeping their bedrooms clean, passing room inspections, and participating in weekly deep cleaning. 5. House rules. Residents must comply with house rules regarding conduct, safety, etc.
  • What support services are provided?
    As a volunteer-run program, we do not have on-site case management, etc. services but we do have community partnerships with Youth Villages for LifeSet Services and strongly encourage all residents to take advantage of this opportunity for support. Lifeset services include pursuing the following goals: - Strive to finish high school or earn a GED - Apply for college and scholarships and begin a college career - Find suitable and stable housing - Learn money management skills - Find and maintain employment - Apply for medical insurance and seek physical and mental health services - Access community resources - Build and maintain healthy relationships - Learn about sexual health and well being, with a focus on pregnancy prevention - Develop strong parenting skills - Establish lifelong connections with caring adults
  • Does anyone else live at the house?
    Yes, we have house managers at both houses. There are times when we don't have residents at one or both of the houses. Having a house manager ensures the houses are kept up and ready for new residents to move in.
  • Who is on the staff and board?
    - Executive Director & Co-Founder: Donna Cherry, ETSU Department of Social Work - Project Manager & Co-Founder: Steve McKinney, Historic Flooring - Board President: Aimee Govett, ETSU Clemmer College - Board Vice-President: Ashley Galloway, Youth Villages Lifeset Program - Board Treasurer: Jennifer (Jai) Gervin, Youth Villages Strategic Partnership (Lifeset) - Board Member-at-Large: Mina McVeigh, ETSU Family Medicine - Board Member-at-Large: Chelsea Rushing, Therapist at Watauga Behavioral Health Services - Board Member-at-Large: Josh Dynes, LMSW
  • What is the annual budget?
    We are working with a proposed/anticipated budget of $25,000 per house annually.
  • Where does your funding come from?
    Huschka House is funded entirely by donations and rent paid by residents (25% of their gross income).
  • Who exactly/what services will my money go to?
    All donations go to operating costs of the house (utilities, mortgage, taxes, website, repairs, etc.). We currently employ 1 part-time office manager.
  • How do I make a monetary donation?
    You can make a monetary donation by credit card or PayPal right here on our website ( or by sending a check to Huschka House Inc., PO Box 774, Johnson City, TN 37605. There are other ways to support Huschka House. You can read about them right here on our website under "Support Us", or "Current Fundraisers"
  • What other donations do you need?
    - Kitchen: Cookware, utensils, flatware, dinnerware, - Resident starter kits -Toiletries: toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss, deodorant, shampoo, soap, razor, -Towels, washcloths, detergent, bed linens, blankets -Resident departure kits (Residents will leave with their starter kits plus:) -Suitcase (in good condition) -Kitchen basics
  • Do you take donations of used furniture?
    Absolutely! When the youth are ready to move out, they will need all kinds of things...tables, chairs, beds, bookcases, sofas, dressers, entertainment centers, etc. We accept most furniture donations, and one of our volunteers will pick up what you have. If we ever have too much to store, or find that there are pieces we can't use, we pay it forward...mostly to our local Haven of Mercy. If you are not comfortable with this arrangement, just let our volunteer know when they come to pick up :)
  • How else can I serve?
    - Direct service to youth: mentoring, life skills (e.g., cooking, shopping, budgeting). - Indirect service: fundraising, newsletter - Contact Donna Cherry: 866-HUSCHKA or
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