The numbers of women and children that are homeless in the United States is staggering. In San Bernardino County California alone, there are more than 1,200 homeless women and children. Many of these women are struggling with substance abuse, and are victims of family and domestic violence. Many of these women have been sent to prison for these issues, and have re-entered into society unable to find employment to provide shelter for themselves and their children.
The Time for Change Foundation is working diligently to face the many issues these homeless women and children face each day. The goal of the Time for Change Foundation is to help provide housing and re-entry services to these women who are willing to make a big change in their lives toward improvement. This takes hard work, faith and support.
We believe that every child deserves a home that is nurturing and supportive. In order for these homeless women to provide for their children we have designed a program which will enable them to become self-sufficient and nurturing parents.
One of the programs that Time for Change Foundation offers is transitional housing. This transitional housing provides safe shelter where the children can develop social skills and feel secure. The women learn skills and tools to become healthy and self-sufficient. Daily activities are scheduled for the children, and the women learn parenting skills and attend workshops to help them with employable skills as well.
The women learn vocational skills, education training, family planning and how to access child care, WIC and other programs to ensure that they can become and remain self-sufficient.
Three phases are implemented to attain these goals.
Phase I: Transitional Living, Months 1-12
During this time the women undergo screening and are referred to services for treatment for their issues. Help is provided to obtain legal documentation. Participation in substance abuse programs is mandatory, and the women are encouraged to attend school and participate in job training. The women must be willing to submit to drug testing during this phase. Nutritional education is provided. Parenting classes, budget and financial management classes are provided. The women participate in daily activities that help them build social skills and independent living skills as well.
Phase II: After Care Services, Months 12-18
During this phase the women will have obtained permanent and affordable housing as well as secured employment. If the children were in foster care, they can now be re-united with their children as long as they attend family and individual counseling. All legal requirements are fulfilled including parole, probations and all treatment programs. Are able to maintain a financial plan, pay rent on time, maintain a savings account, stay clean and sober and continue to engage in community support systems.
Phase III (Under development)
For women who have completed Phase I & II, there will be an option for them to live in an apartment complex that will involve community gardens and a community center that can provide ongoing educational classes, meeting spaces and a place for members to meet and continue to support their advancement towards staying healthy and self-sufficient.
Many other services are offered through Time for Change Foundation, including computer skills training, continuing adult education, transportation, and emergency shelter.
With so many struggling homeless women out there in San Bernardino county, there is hope and support - only real requirement - you must want to change for the good and they are there to help.
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