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Wauwatosa nuns create new home for women with developmental disabilities

Posted at 5:30 AM, Sep 23, 2020

WAUWATOSA — If you build it, they will come. Women with developmental disabilities have a new place in which to flourish.

It’s all thanks to the Carmelite Sisters of the Divine Heart of Jesus, in our Wauwatosa.

What started as a vision more than two years ago by the nuns has now come to life.

Janis Schellinger lives in one of the 15 units built to serve women living with developmental disabilities. She gave us a tour of her new home with the sisters, and the projects they have done together.

Janis shared how happy she has been coming here, “This place changed me. It’s so nice here. I’m doing more things. I’m coloring.

The story of how Janis got here, starts after her sister Dianne tuned into TMJ4 News Today and caught a report on the new facility and special feature on one of the nuns in our 'Passion Project' Series, “It was early in the morning I was getting ready and I saw your feature about Sister Mary Rose Therese. I thought wow that might be a good place for my sister.”

Her day now includes four classes that vary each day, and exercise at night. Dianne adds, “If anything happened to any of us we knew she would be extremely safe.”

Which is the peace of mind she hopes more families will discover here. Sister Therese says because of COVID-19, they still have vacancies to fill, “We do our best to make them safe as we have promised and happy.”

Sister Therese shares how this new focus has changed her as well, “It makes me more selfless. We just need to be there to guide and help them.

Click here to learn about the residential center for women with disabilities, and enrichment programs.

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