Say the word “home” and most of us conjure up images of warmth, family and a sense of security. But for a growing number of women in America without access to safe, stable housing, food and other necessities, “home” means something completely different.
Rosie’s Place has been providing a compassionate and nurturing environment to help poor and homeless women in the Boston area maintain their dignity, seek opportunity and find security in their lives since it was founded in 1974 as the first women-only shelter in the country. Each individual is offered the comfort of a warm bed, a hot shower, meals and groceries, as well as a stepping stone to opportunity through programs that support and enable women to become engaged and empowered.
In 2014, Rosie’s Place reached beyond its own doors to serve women in need through a partnership called the Rosie’s Place Community Collaborative. Working with the Boston Housing Authority, Rosie’s Place established a satellite location at the Franklin Field public housing development to provide groceries, advocacy, and legal and job-search assistance to low-income, single mothers living there. They also partnered with the Boston Public Schools to offer groceries, advocacy and housing-search assistance to mothers with children attending school in eight underserved neighborhoods in the south end of Boston. And, most recently, Rosie’s Place extended the Community Collaborative to include a partnership with the Massachusetts Trial Courts that aims to help poor and homeless women who are dealing with evictions, family court and other crises navigate the legal system.
“For every woman who comes through our shelter doors, there is another poor or homeless woman who needs our help but can’t or doesn’t come to Rosie’s Place,” said Sue Marsh, President of Rosie’s Place. “As part of our mission, we’re looking for ways to bring our services to them. This year, the Community Collaborative will reach 2,000 of these women; each is a strong, resilient and capable individual facing unimaginable obstacles who deserves our respect, compassion and support.”