An Investment with a big return

Posted by Sandy Durbala on Dec 13, 2018 2:35:48 PM

Prelude has kicked off a fundraising effort to renovate the Bernie Lorenz Recovery facility, our transitional home for women in recovery.  Funds raised will pay for the complete renovation of the kitchen and four bathrooms, improve the physical accessibility, security and safety for residents and staff, and repair structural issues on this aging home.

“We have an opportunity to offer women a welcoming and positive environment at BLR – an environment where they can truly begin to thrive, some for the first time in their lives.”  -- Amy Costello, Prelude Board Member

 "In 2019 we will celebrate 30 years of the Bernie Lorenz Recovery program. The board is committed to the success of this fundraising initiative and welcomes community support with this project" -- Matt Johnson, Board Chair


A Safe Haven to Heal

The Bernie Lorenz Recovery program home is in the beautiful historic Drake Neighborhood District. The program was founded by women in Des Moines who recognized the need for a program to help women transition from a substance abuse treatment center to independent living.  They named the program in honor of Bernie Lorenz, a Des Moines woman who was known for opening her home to recovering alcoholics and supporting them with food, clothing, a bed and helping them find employment and permanent housing.  Since opening its doors, more than 2000 Iowa women have seen firsthand the value of a quality transitional program.

What makes the Bernie Lorenz Recovery house such a special place?

  • Located discreetly in a residential area helps the women learn civic responsibilities of living in a neighborhood environment.
  • It’s located on the transit bus system which provides easier access to employment opportunities in the Des Moines area.
  • The safe, welcoming, supportive environment strengthens the women’s chances of long-term recovery.
  • It’s staffed 24/7 with credentialed counselors who work with each individual woman and collectively in group settings.
  • Women are able to continue treatment while also receiving lessons on nutrition, parenting, financial management and job placement skills.
  • The BLR programming is designed specifically for the needs of women in recovery and the barriers they often face.
  • It’s a home where 17 peers who are working through similar issues come together to support each other.
  • It’s a place that will always support their recovery no matter how much time has lapsed since moving on to permanent housing.

We Are Here For Her. You Can Be Too.

The Bernie Lorenz Recovery program was established as a non-profit organization and was initially funded with donations from individual, corporate and foundation donors.  In 2007 the program became part of Prelude’s full continuum of care and to this day plays a vital role in providing women in Iowa with a half-way house option following graduation from a primary treatment program.

The completion of the renovations and updates to the home will provide a welcoming physical environment for women participating in the program, provide increased safety and accessibility for patients and staff, and lower the long-term costs of maintaining this century-old house.

“Philanthropy has been the cornerstone of the Bernie Lorenz Recovery program and the home it resides in. Throughout the past 30 years, community members have stepped up and made gifts to continue the excellence in programming. It’s time to bring the facility up to the same level. The women we serve deserve it.”  -- CEO, Ron Berg.

kitchen drawing 12-18 (2)



                         3-D rendering of kitchen                         Bathroom level 2 drawing 12-18       

We invite individuals and organizations to join our efforts and help Prelude reach its goal by making a gift to the campaign. Donate Today The net result of the project will be an improved experience for our Bernie Lorenz Recovery patients and staff and operating efficiencies in a facility that will function for the needs of the program into the future.

For more information about the fundraising project, contact

We're Here to Help.

At Prelude, we work tirelessly to improve the lives of individuals, their families, and members of their communities.

From prevention to intensive residential care, Prelude offers a range of services to help you and your loved one lead a full, productive life.  Prelude Behavioral Services has been providing comprehensive services since 1969. We are committed to serving hard-to-reach and disenfranchised populations and to breaking down barriers that hinder access to behavioral health care for all Iowans.



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