The Hoarding Project Statement of Beliefs

People seeking help through The Hoarding Project have a right to know what values and beliefs underlie the project:

What we Believe About Our Work

  • Hoarding is a compulsive behavior that stems from a variety of external and internal factors, including biology, psychology, and the environment.
  • Hoarding is a problem that affects individuals, families, friends, communities, and cultures; treatment approaches must also reflect a systemic perspective.
  • Hoarding behavior has been found to be related to genetics, brain functioning, and mental illness. It may also function as a coping mechanism for unresolved trauma or loss that has occurred in a person’s past or present, and it may become reinforced by emotions and behaviors over time.
  • “Hoarding” describes a behavior, not a person.

What We Believe About Families

  • Families can be defined in an infinite number of ways, including biological, legal, and psychological relationships.
  • Families can experience conflict in their relationships due to hoarding behaviors and, if the conflict is unaddressed, it can significantly hinder the healing process.
  • Families deserve focused attention in the healing process in order to reconnect and maintain relationships with their loved ones who hoard.
  • Families have the capacity to move past anxiety, distrust, and hostility and relate to each other from their highest selves.
  • Families which are supportive and compassionate toward their loved one who hoards can be the most important component to healing and must be part of the therapeutic process.

What We Believe About Healing

  • Healing and treatment approaches in most communities are not effective enough for many people who hoard.
  • Healing for compulsive hoarding must aim to reduce hoarding behavior, restore relationships and process unresolved emotional wounds.
  • Healing is a slow, and oftentimes difficult, process for all involved.
  • Healing requires collaboration between a team of specially-trained professionals and families in order to be more effective.

What We Believe About Healing

  • We work to support healthy relationships and alleviate suffering related to compulsive hoarding for individuals, couples, and families.
  • We work to inform the culture at large about compulsive hoarding collaboratively through education, research, and therapy.
  • We work to reflect a commitment to serving our communities in ways that are environmentally-conscious and encourage social awareness and activism.

Our Mission

The mission of The Hoarding Project is to change our culture's understanding about hoarding behavior through research-informed therapy, education, and professional collaboration.

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The Minnesota Hoarding Project (MHP) was established in late 2009, by Jennifer Sampson, a marriage and family therapist and doctoral student in the Family Social Science Department at the University of Minnesota.

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Meet The Team

Jennifer and Janet have worked to develop an educational-support group for family members of persons who hoard in order to help them learn about compulsive hoarding and manage feelings of frustration, grief, and loss associated with the hoarding behavior in the family.

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Contact Us

Please feel free to fill out the contact form on the contact page to send us any questions you may have.

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