San Francisco SafeHouse
The SafeHouse program opened its doors in January of 1998, in response to a wave of violence against prostituted women in San Francisco, which included the brutal murder of several. Homeless women working as prostitutes in the city are victims of horrific street violence, and for all but a very few escaping the streets on their own is unrealistic. Prostituted women are controlled by pimps and traffickers, dependent on their drug habits, and imprisoned by years of psychological trauma resulting from abuse, violence, incest and rejection. Scorned by their families and by society, they are left on the streets to survive as best they can.
SafeHouse is a clean and sober transitional housing program that empowers homeless prostituted women. We support the women by providing a safe and supportive place for them to live for up to 18 months while they work on transforming their lives. During their stay at SafeHouse, the women participate in an outpatient day treatment program for at least six months to address their histories of trauma, substance abuse, eating disorders, domestic violence and the other effects of the prostitution lifestyle. The women participate in intensive individual psychotherapy for the duration of their stay, on-going group therapy and peer counseling, educational and vocational training and rehabilitation, money management, mind body wellness coaching, yoga, nutrition education, expressive arts therapy, creative writing groups and other life skills training.
By the time they graduate, every woman at SafeHouse is either employed, in school or participating in community service if she is disabled. Graduates remain in contact with the program and serve as mentors to their sisters who are still in the house. Every graduate has secured independent housing and has a plan for making her dreams a reality!