Celebrating Every Win!

Hello Friends,  

Just like the seasons, Marian House is abuzz with change, growth and transition. New women are entering Marian House I full of hope and anticipation. Several women completed their first in-person mock interviews with over 8 interviewers from corporate partners since COVID. Ladies in Marian House II are achieving goals, gaining financial stability, and pursuing their dreams.  

With your support, Marian House helps residents to develop the skills to achieve their independence and move into the world with confidence. Phyllis is a prime example; she has grown stronger everyday since she started with us. She is a living of example of “not looking like what she has been through”. Lisa (Lisa Shifren Photography) and Donna Maria took stunning photographs of over 20 women and children of Marian House at Christmas. Please read Phyllis’ encouraging story in the Resident Spotlight. She is one of many women supported by your love and generosity. (We have also shared a few holiday photos on page 4). 

On April 12th, we celebrated 42 years of ministry and service. To celebrate, we held an online day of giving and celebration. In May, our Ravens Raffle Ticket sales begin. Take a chance to win season tickets with us. Also, we are returning Blingo! You can play Bingo and win jewelry and accessories valued over $100. Tickets are $50 per person. Blingo is being held on May 10, 2024 at Notre Dame Preparatory. Details on all these events are inside.  

We are in full swing planning for our 16th Annual Race to Embrace Independence on Saturday, September 28, 2024. Early bird registration begins soon for the reduced price of $40. We hope you will partner with us, sponsor our race, and join the festivities. As always, we need volunteers, sponsors, and runners. I can’t wait to celebrate all great things happening with you in person. We are going to have a great time! Thank you in advance supporting our events and activities.  

The biggest news to start the season – Marian House was among more than 250 awardees from across the country selected by MacKenzie Scott through the Yield Giving Open Call to receive $2 million dollars! We are overjoyed and overwhelmed with gratitude! There are not enough words to express our thanks for their vote of confidence in us and their investment in our work in Baltimore through Mackenzie Scott’s Yield Giving (Read full Press Release on our website). We will steward your gift with love and wisdom, as we house and lead women and their families on their healing journey. 


In leadership, gratitude & joy, 

Katie Allston LCSW-C 

President & CEO 



Happy New Year from everyone at Marian House! I am sure you join me in feeling somewhat relieved that 2020 is over, even though we know we are not over the hurdle yet. With the arrival of a vaccine now in our midst, we join you in having some hope for relief soon.

Despite a tumultuous year, we are grateful for all the good we have experienced in 2020. It is the year that Marian House continued to expand, as we acquired the Women’s Industrial Exchange (WIE) building in June. This exciting opportunity allowed us to add seven more apartment units to our housing portfolio, many of which are already occupied by Marian House alums! We also established a new partnership with the Maryland Women’s Heritage Center, now located in the storefront space of WIE at 333 North Charles Street. Marian House also recently purchased a property on Greenmount Avenue, giving us five more apartment units in which we can place Marian House women and children.

This year we showed our resilience and adapted in ways we never imagined! As you may know, our annual Race to Embrace Independence 5K went fully virtual. While we missed seeing you in person on race day, you “showed up” nonetheless and helped us meet and even exceed our fundraising goals. This was just one way our dedicated supporters showed their faith in and support of our program in this pandemic!

You are the main reason that 2020 was a good year for Marian House. Your support and generosity throughout the year ensured that we could pivot during this pandemic, without compromising the services that our women and children need and deserve. We appreciate your prayers, notes and donations. We are truly blessed to have you in our fold.

In this newsletter, we share more positive highlights from 2020, including the first Marian House camping trip. We also highlight the Smolen family who have generously given their time and talent to us in different ways, as well as a resident whose story highlights how your support changes lives!

We know the challenges we all faced last year will not simply disappear in 2021, still, we are grateful for another year to provide housing and support services to women and children in need. With a focus on the future, we are already planning a 40th Anniversary celebration for April of 2022! Please stay tuned for details.

We wish you a year of health, happiness, and hope for 2021. We look forward to the same.