BENEFITING: WOMENS TRANSITIONAL LIVING CTR INC
EVENT DATE: Sep 28, 2016
Founded in 1976, WTLC is the oldest domestic violence shelter in California and the third oldest in the nation. WTLC was the dream of several members of the Orange County Chapter of the National Organization for Women who were tired of seeing “women and children spending nights in cars in parking lots.” because resources for survivors of domestic violence in Orange County were “virtually non-existent.” WTLC gradually grew from an emergency shelter to multiservice organization dedicating to ending the cycle of violence through a multi-pronged approach: Shelter, Supportive Services, and Community Education & Advocacy.
As part of our shelter and housing programs, our Financial Capacity services have helped survivors of domestic violence since the inception of our shelter forty years ago. Survivors who manage to escape the abuse and survive often face overwhelming odds in obtaining long-term security and safety. Ruined credit scores, sporadic employment histories and legal issues caused by the battering make it extremely difficult to gain independence, safety, and long-term security. Because of this, WTLC is dedicated to integrate a full spectrum financial capabilities services into our emergency and shelter programs. WTLC has set the following objectives for our Financial Capabilities Program:
Educate survivors about economic abuse and its role in domestic violence.
Provide strategies to address the current financial and safety challenges face clients.
Assist survivors with the challenges resulting from an identity or name change and an abuser’s misuse of the survivor’s personal records.
Deliver group trainings and one-on-one sessions to help survivors understand financial fundamentals and steps to building a strong financial base including budgeting, saving, building credit, and managing debt.
As with all our programs, our long-term goal is to help survivors achieve stabilization through self-sufficiency, permanent housing, and a violence-free life. By providing our participants with the support necessary to address barriers towards stability, the counseling to help them build self-esteem, and the skills to lead self-determinate lives, WTLC is helping them build stable and sustainable futures.
Our Financial Capability services are based on a toolkit provided by the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED) and Administration for Children and Families (ACF), a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This toolkit is designed to integrate financial capability services into existing programs, meeting clients where they are currently at. We are currently in the process of building out and formalizing this program, developing a strategic plan that addresses ourclients’ specific financial needs, creating an expanded staffing plan, building a clear pipeline of referrals and partners, and implementing these services into our current programing.