Category: Community Outreach

The Difference between Prairie Restoration and Reconstruction

Prairie Restoration pic

Prairie Restoration

The owner of Dermatology Consultants of Wisconsin, Steven Armus is a dermatologist who holds over a decade of experience in practice. In addition to his work in medicine, Steven Armus serves as the owner and biologist of Native Prairie Restoration, where he works to remediate ponds and prairies.

Prairie restoration is the process of restoring a prairie that has been exposed to invasive plants that affect its native ecosystem. Typically, restoration involves the removal of these invasive plant species and the seeding and management of native plants. Restoration is not to be confused with a prairie remnant, which is an untouched section of prairie that was part of a larger area in the past.

In addition to restoration, some prairies may be in need of reconstruction. Reconstruction, which is sometimes necessary to restore land plowed for crops, is the most work-intensive form of prairie development. It includes replanting of native species and regrading of soil to mimic the original groundwork of the prairie. When replanting a prairie, seeds used typically include native varieties of grass and broad leaf plants.

The Counseling Clinic at the Guest House of Milwaukee

Counseling Clinic pic

Counseling Clinic

Dr. Steven Armus provides dermatological services as the owner of Dermatology Consultants of Wisconsin LLC in Franksville. Outside of work, Dr. Steven Armus gives back through his support of the Guest House of Milwaukee. This organization provides a range of services for individuals experiencing homelessness.

One of the most important resources that individuals have access to at the Guest House of Milwaukee is the Counseling Clinic. Through this clinic, individuals can undergo alcohol and other drug abuse (AODA) counseling and address other mental health concerns that could contribute to their homelessness. Ultimately, mental stability is a prerequisite for sustainable housing.

The clinic takes a client-centered and trauma-informed approach to counseling that is sensitive to the needs of different genders and gender presentations. Each counseling sessions is based on the needs of the client and helps move toward identified goals. This approach seems to be working. According to a 2013 survey, less than 10 percent of guests reported feelings of self-satisfaction before coming into the center but 50 percent said that they felt more satisfied with their life upon leaving.

Cream City Gardens at the Guest House of Milwaukee

Cream City Gardens pic

Cream City Gardens

Dr. Steven Armus, a dedicated physician and prairie restoration technician, is the owner of Dermatology Consultants of Wisconsin and Native Prairie Restoration, both in Franksville. In addition to helping his patients and the environment, Dr. Steven Armus supports his community through involvement in charitable organizations such as the Guest House of Milwaukee.

Committed to providing shelter and education to individuals who are homeless, the Guest House of Milwaukee maintains numerous programs, including Cream City Gardens, an urban garden that provides home-grown produce to Friedens Community Ministries and the Guest House.

Consisting of 56 raised garden beds, half an acre of planting rows, and a rainwater harvesting pavilion, Cream City Gardens grows everything from carrots to watermelons. In 2015, the gardens raised more than 4,400 pounds of produce. The plants are watered with rainwater that has been collected in the harvesting pavilion. Each time it rains, the pavilion collects up to 500 gallons of water.

The Guest House of Milwaukee also provides job training services through Cream City Gardens. The gardens host the Urban Agriculture Training Program for people who have been homeless. In the program, participants learn about gardening and the green industry and become prepared for jobs at a farmer’s market or in the urban farming field.