About Us


Since 2003, and with over 15 years of serving this population, the S.T.A.R.T. House vision arose out of the realization that people needed more than just food, shelter, and medication. What they really needed was the necessary resiliency, stability, and support to keep moving forward in order to become productive in life. That's why we are here and that's what differentiates us!

About the Founder

Dorothy (Dee) Johnson is the Founder & Owner of S.ocial T.herapeutic A.dvocacy R.ecovery T.raining better known as ST.A.R.T. House as a way to reach the deep needs of people who need additional help, skills, and advocacy in order to "jump start" and/or recover their life functionality and purpose.  With a heart of compassion and many years of hard work, Dee's vision became a reality to serve the disadvantaged and those with physical disabilities and/or mental illness.  Dee works sacrificially, with sincerity, and integrity to make sure that those who come in contact with her or are seeking help are treated with honor and dignity regardless of their difficulties and deficiencies.  Dee Johnson is credentialed in many areas and is particularly suited to serve this segment of the community.   In addition to our Twelve Step Program, S.T.A.R.T. House has formed community partnerships with the Akron-Canton Regional Food Bank and the Goodwill Bus Pass Program.  The S.T.A.R.T. House Summit Team includes a part-time Assistant, and Fred Slack, LSW, who is a Licensed Social Worker in the organization.  

We're Open!

In January 2018, we held an Open House to announce that S.T.A.R.T.  House is a 501(c)(3) non-profit public charity.  At our Home Office, we provide programs that educate and assist many who are disabled and marginalized to help them integrate into community living:

  • Life Skills Training

  • Literacy Training

  • Basic Computer Training
  • Employment Readiness Training
  • Music and Art Therapy Classes
  • Recovery Programs and Social Work
  • Wellness and Holistic Health Services
  • Housing Location Services
  • Information and Referrals

Vision Statement

To build up our community by educating and enabling those who have various disabilities that hinder their progress; and by doing so, give them a "fresh jump start" and perspective of life.

We provide specific skills training and social activities that continue to support them so they can be productive, live interdependently with others, and have new hope and purpose.