Human Services

Downtown Women's Center

Every Woman Housed

aka DWC   |   Los Angeles, CA   |  http://www.downtownwomenscenter.org/

Mission

DWC's mission is to end women's homelessness in greater Los Angeles through housing, wellness, employment, and advocacy. We envision a Los Angeles with every woman housed and on a path to personal stability.

Ruling year info

1979

Chief Executive Officer

Amy Turk

Main address

442 South San Pedro Street

Los Angeles, CA 90013 USA

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EIN

31-1597223

Cause area (NTEE code) info

Homeless Services/Centers (P85)

Other Housing Support Services (L80)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

The 2019 Los Angeles Homeless Count shows that there are approximately 18,331 women experiencing homelessness daily. Although Los Angeles County doubled the number of people moving from homelessness into housing, the homelessness crisis is a part of a broader economic and housing affordability crisis. The 2019 Homeless Count also revealed that 23% of people surveyed were experiencing homelessness for the first time last year, further indicating that the economic and housing affordability crisis far outpaces the number of housing placements that can be achieved through public investments. Furthermore, services and housing in Skid Row have historically been designed to meet the needs of adult men, leaving a gap in services targeted to meet the unique needs of women experiencing homelessness. Therefore, DWC’s gender-specific lens and strengths-based approach is essential to the effective delivery of services for this population.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Permanent Supportive Housing

DWC's two on-site residences provide permanent housing, without time limits, to 119 women. We help residents maintain their housing through a wide variety of supportive services--the most fundamental being case management. Our case managers regularly assess our residents' needs and connect them to services that support their long-term housing and personal stability. We are proud to share that through these efforts in 2019, 99% of our residents remained in their housing one year after placement. In addition, we offer participants in our residence who are ready to move on with the opportunity to transfer to independent housing. DWC is a Coordinated Entry System (CES) Entry Point, allowing participants to complete a universal intake and housing application to expedite the process of securing housing in the community.

Population(s) Served
Females
Homeless people

DWC offers a wide array of services to women experiencing homelessness on a drop-in basis through our Day Center - including three nutritious meals daily, clean bathrooms and showers, laundry facilities, a secure mailing address, a fresh change of clothing, and other vital services. Through our Day Center, DWC also provides one-on-one case management services for women to connect them to housing, healthcare, legal aid, transportation, government benefits, education, job training opportunities, work placements, and other resources.

Population(s) Served
Females
Homeless people

DWC’s Health and Wellness program provides primary healthcare for women experiencing homelessness or extreme poverty through our on-site Women’s Health Center, Los Angeles’ first and only health center exclusively for women. This includes basic medical care, mammograms and women's health services, HIV screenings, physical assessments, and preventative care to reduce diabetes, obesity, hypertension and other chronic diseases prevalent in this population. DWC also offers robust mental health services and enrichment activities focused on overall health and social connectedness, including psychiatric sessions, mental health counseling, group therapy, self-care workshops, fitness classes, and cultural outings provided by volunteers and donors.

Population(s) Served
Females
Homeless people

DWC’s Workforce Development and Social Enterprise programs provide a comprehensive and individualized approach to learn skills that lead to employment and income, as well as increased self-esteem. Internally and through our partners, DWC offers a range of education and workforce development resources including skills-training, vocational workshops, transitional employment, individualized support, and job placements. DWC’s social enterprise, MADE by DWC, is designed to help prepare participants for future bridge and/or traditional employment opportunities, while providing them with the income, support, and skills necessary to enhance their stability and well-being.

Population(s) Served
Females
Unemployed, underemployed, and dislocated people

DWC’s Community-Based Housing program places over 50 women into housing throughout Los Angeles annually, while providing over 300 women with linkages to case management, employment training, and other supportive services. DWC is the only homeless service agency in Los Angeles that has three different rapid re-housing funding streams, thus demonstrating our ability to provide effective services to women from different backgrounds who are facing multiple co-occurring challenges to finding and sustaining their housing. Recognizing the majority of DWC’s served population has experienced domestic violence (DV), DWC leverages evidence-based practices in our housing programs that are proven to be impactful for DV survivors, including survivor-driven advocacy and trauma-informed care.

Population(s) Served
Females
Homeless people

DWC provides a leading voice for systemic change on behalf of all women who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. We believe the most effective way to advocate for systems change is to ensure the voices and lived experiences of DWC residents and participants are at the forefront of our work. With this in mind, we launched an Advocates Program in 2016 to bring the voice of women experiencing homelessness to the policy table, focusing on community-based solutions that meet their specific needs.

Population(s) Served
Females
Unemployed, underemployed, and dislocated people

In Summer 2019, DWC launched a 25-bed Bridge Housing program, located in our Day Center space, to ensure that women in our community have a safe space to rest overnight as they await housing placement. This is the only women-only Bridge Housing program in the Skid Row community, and a critical resource for women awaiting housing placements, especially given the prevalence of trauma among the women we serve.

Population(s) Served
Females
Homeless people

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of homeless participants engaged in mental health services

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Females,Homeless people

Related Program

Health and Wellness

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This metric includes the amount of women who received robust mental heath services including individual and group therapy, crisis intervention, and more.

Number of direct care staff who received training in trauma informed care

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

All staff, both direct-service and operational staff, have received traum- informed training.

Number of volunteers

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

DWC hosts about 5,000 volunteers a year, including over 350 group volunteers.

Number of clients served

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This includes women served in our day center, residences, off-site housing placements, and supportive services programs.

Number of participants who gain employment

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Females,Homeless people

Related Program

Workforce Development and Social Enterprise

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This includes women placed into bridge and permanent employment.

Percent of households that retain permanent housing for at least 6 months.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Permanent Supportive Housing

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This metric includes all permanent supportive and community-based housing placements.

Number of homeless participants engaged in housing services

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Females,Adults,Homeless people

Related Program

Permanent Supportive Housing

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This metric includes the amount of women who secured housing through DWC's onsite Permanent Supportive Housing and Community-Based Housing programs.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Charting impact

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

DWC has a long history of growth and excellence, guided by the vision to lead the implementation of innovating solutions and to create committed communities that work collaboratively. Our mission is to end women's homelessness in greater Los Angeles through housing, wellness, and advocacy.<br/><br/>Goals:<br/><br/>• Increase direct access to basic services as well as permanent supportive housing, health, education, and other supportive services;<br/>• Ensure immediate stabilization of our participants, assist them in learning coping skills, enhancing their self-determination, and contributing to their personal recovery;<br/>• Help reduce use of and dependence on high cost emergency services currently used by many; and <br/>• Improve the overall socio-economic, health, and education outcomes for the Skid Row community, while contributing to the national efforts to end chronic homelessness

1. Continue to increase housing options for women experiencing homelessness 2. Maintain a culture of shared leadership and consistently collect and incorporate feedback from participants, volunteers, and staff 3. Continue to cultivate a high-performing and engaged workforce 4. Build opportunities for women to voice their needs in the community 5. Continue to fortify infrastructure for effective operations 6. Engage volunteers and business leaders to fuel organizational growth

Despite being founded over forty years ago, DWC remains the first and only organization in Los Angeles exclusively dedicated to addressing the immediate and long-term needs of women overcoming homelessness and extreme poverty. Our innovative, individualized, and trauma-informed approach to ending homelessness for women addresses all dimensions of participants’ needs.

1. Stabilize Women: number of women on path to personal stability; number of women with adequate housing.<br/>2. End Cycle: number of women who have ended the cycle of homelessness.<br/>3. Build Org Sustainability: net surplus/deficit YTD compared to budget YTD; number of months of financial reserves; number of staff training opportunities; number of volunteer service hours.<br/>4. Elevate DWC Culture: number of stakeholders (staff, Board, volunteers, Ladies) aligned with mission and values.<br/>5. Expand Impact: number of conference and/or technical assistance presentations given; number of tours; number of Volunteer Orientation attendees; number of media impressions; number of website visits.

In 2019, DWC’s drop-in Day Center provided services to a total of 3,339 unduplicated women, including providing 123,940 meals and 11,923 showers. We also provided 893 women with 3,498 case management sessions through our Day Center. Additionally, 361 women accessed physical health services in the Women’s Health Center in 2019, totaling 1,052 visits. DWC’s clinical staff also provide onsite robust mental health services. In 2019, DWC provided 400 women with 1,325 individual and group mental health therapy sessions. In 2019, DWC also provided 119 units of on-site permanent supportive housing at our San Pedro and Los Angeles Street residences. Of the women in our residences, an impressive 99% have remained housed. Through our community based housing program, we placed 79 women and their families into housing throughout Los Angeles in 2019, and provided supportive services to 481 women to ensure they are able to retain their housing in the long-term; 99% of women housed through our community based housing program maintained their housing in the last year. In 2019, DWC also engaged 803 unduplicated women in our employment services and held 325 vocational workshops. Finally, through our services, 113 women secured employment in 2019 – a vital step towards long-term housing and self-sufficiency.

Financials

Downtown Women's Center
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

Downtown Women's Center

Board of directors
as of 4/2/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Heather Rim

AECOM

Term: 2018 - 2020

Donella Wilson

Green Hasson & Janks LLP

Katherine Forster

Munger, Tolles & Olson

Erin Mills

DaVita HealthCare Partners Plan, Inc.

Lynn Hall Russell

Attorney at Law

Elyse Klein

The Capital Group Companies

Patricia Gonzalez

Wells Fargo

Heather Rim

Aecom

Rachel Cappocia

Jeffer Mangels Butler & Mitchell LLP

Robert Crawford

Bank of America

Deanna Freund

Southern California Gas Company

Catherine Collins

Accenture

Alma Graham

Anthem, Inc.

Soo Koo

Josefina Leon

The Walt Disney Company

Syama Meagher

Scaling Retail

Mary Morikawa

City National Bank

Scott Weingarten, MD, MPH

Cedars-Sinai and Stanson Health

Vicki Curry

Fox Corporation

Jessica Monge Coria

Corporation for Supportive Housing

Alisa Do

Edison International

Elizabeth Faraut

LA LOOP

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Keywords

homeless, women, poverty, housing, self sufficiency, downtown women's center, downtown, los angeles, california, workforce development, health and wellness