The experience of homelessness and gender-based violence bears heavily on individuals, especially women of color. The effects on children are even heavier.
At Washington Area Women’s Foundation, we are committed to improving the lives of women and girls in the Washington, DC region, and are pleased to support our grantee partner House of Ruth to provide a safe haven and sense of hope for women and children facing such challenges.
House of Ruth is a leading provider of housing and supportive services for women and children experiencing trauma associated with domestic violence, homelessness, mental health, substance abuse, and poverty in Washington, D.C.
Founded in 1976, House of Ruth has assisted more than 14,500 women and children and continues to serve more than 1,000 individuals each year through tailored programs that support clients’ development, well-being, and ability to rebuild safe, independent, and sustainable lives.
Our partnership supports House of Ruth’s programs like Kidspace Child and Family Development Center – a free and nationally accredited child development center for children ages six weeks to five years old. Kidspace provides trauma-informed care to families experiencing homelessness to ensure children are nurtured and receive the development skills needed to reach their highest potential. Through this partnership, House of Ruth is able to help women like “Jayda” who – like many others – has faced challenges and trauma and is looking to provide her children with an educational environment to help them succeed.
Jayda is a mother of two children enrolled at House of Ruth’s Kidspace Child and Family Development Center. She is expecting and is looking forward to enrolling her third child as well. At Kidspace, Jayda has formed strong relationships with the staff and other parents. She is very involved – often advocating shared concerns from fellow parents and utilizing available resources that allow her to seek advice on how best to support her children’s development while improving her well-being.
When Jayda has a question, she is able to reach out to House of Ruth’s Family Engagement Specialist where she receives parenting advice and techniques that she can effectively implement at home. When she had concerns about her daughter’s ability to manage emotions and express herself, Kidspace was instrumental in developing solutions to help her daughter communicate. When she went through a domestic violence situation, House of Ruth connected her to its Domestic Violence Support Center to receive counseling.
Jayda lost her job due to the ongoing effects of the pandemic. Since then, House of Ruth has been working to find her living space that will meet her family’s needs and provide encouragement and support as she looks to secure a new position and get back on her feet.
We are proud of the work House of Ruth is doing in our community and for women like Jada.
To learn more about House of Ruth, visit https://houseofruth.org/.