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YWCA Women's "Passages" program
1012 C Street, Downtown
619-239-2341

The folks at the YWCA believe they're unique (and they probably are) with their "Passages" program. It gives single homeless women a bed and food while they deal with problems of domestic violence, drug and alcohol abuse, and mental health. The rigorous but kindly program was created in the early 1990s. "It's divided into three phases," says Carrie Baker, the program manager. "Stabilization is a 90-day program of intense group and individual therapy. Clients in the W.I.T. (Women in Transition) program have 30 days to find employment, and once they do, they pay rent -- 30 percent of their income to the YWCA." After the third phase, called Supportive Independence, "easily 60 percent make it back into the world," says Baker.

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