The Downtown Women’s Center (DWC) is the only organization in Los Angeles focused exclusively on serving and empowering women experiencing homelessness and formerly homeless women. Founded in 1978, their mission is to end homelessness for women in greater Los Angeles through housing, wellness, employment, and advocacy. DWC was the first permanent supportive housing provider for women in the United States. Among the many services they provide, they offer the only health clinic exclusively for women in Skid Row, and the only Drop-in Day Center exclusively for homeless women in the city of Los Angeles.
Through the support of Visionary Women, DWC's Financial Literacy Education Program was able to provide the technology, training materials, curriculum and workshops for financial literacy training and resources to over 350 women in their learning center.
Launched in Rwanda in 2016 and Ghana in 2017, Indego Africa’s Vocational & Business Training program provides young people with artisan vocational and foundational business training. Their approach not only creates jobs for youth, but also helps ensure the sustainability of artisan cooperatives across Africa. Many of their original partner cooperatives in Rwanda were formed by genocide survivors.
Thanks to the grant from Visionary Women, Indego Africa was able to enroll 30 young women in their Vocational & Business Training in Rwanda. Before enrolling in the program, 89% of these young women did not earn any income. Within six months, 100% of participants were employed with the skills they needed to pursue long-term careers in the artisan sector.
Chrysalis is a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a pathway to self-sufficiency for homeless and low-income individuals. They provide core employment services across Los Angeles County that help participants prepare for, find, and retain employment.
Visionary Women is working with Chrysalis to provide support for programs that help homeless and low-income women find and retain employment through intensive case management, job-readiness classes, job application support, mental health counseling, legal assistance, interview clothing, transportation assistance, food, computers, phones and transitional employment with a Chrysalis in-house social enterprise business. The benefits of getting and keeping a job provide a woman with much more than an income and survival.
A steady job positions a women on the path to self-sufficiency, stability, self-esteem and a greater sense of dignity.