Who are we?
The CFM Lamb’s Fold Women’s Center is a not-for-profit agency dedicated to providing service women and children in our community. The LFWC offers encouragement, tolerance, care and compassion to women (and their children) who have found themselves in a homeless situation due to an untimely pregnancy, fleeing an abusive situation, or a financial crisis. The LFWC provides community-based transitional housing for up to two years for women and their children during a critical time when lives hang in the balance. Our program goal is to help women to become self-sufficient.
Our Program is Divided into Three Phases:
I. Psychoeducational classes
II. Identification of assets, goal-setting & monitoring, securing of employment
III. Transition to self-sufficiency
As of November, 2012 the LFWC has provided:
649,017 meals and snacks;
173,523 shelter nights (one bed, one person, one night)
10,428 hours of professional in-house counseling;
14,344 hours of in-house classes;
95,129 garments and packages of diapers (to residents and community)
National: According to data from the National Coalition for the Homeless Fact Sheet (April, 1999), “A 1990 Ford Foundation study found that 50% of homeless women and children were fleeing abuse (Zorza, 1991)” . The National Coalition for the Homeless Fact Sheet #7 (February, 1999) tells us that “The fastest growing segment of the homeless population is families with children. Families with children constitute approximately 40% of people who become homeless. . . (Shinn and Weitzman, 1996).
Local: 1990 census data for Will County reports: 3,650 female-headed families, of which 32.5% are living below poverty level. Of these 3,650 female-headed households, 1,119 families have children under 18 years; 643 families have children under 5 years. Data this specific is not yet available for the 2000 census.
* The Joliet/Will County Continuum of Care has identified the need for 90 additional transitional beds for families.
* Fleeing domestic violence/abuse continues to be the #1 reason for women and their children becoming homeless.
* Children who have been victimized by abuse need violence prevention intervention to break the cycle of abuse and decrease their potential to become perpetrators of abuse as adults.
Statement of Condition:
Facts of Life in Will and Surrounding Counties:
1. Homeless women have very low incomes
2. Childcare costs are high: typical cost for care for one infant is $250/week
3. Rents are high: $900-plus per month is not unusual for apartment large enough to accommodate children
Homeless women lack the resources to secure permanent housing; they usually settle for low-income housing which exacerbates their hopeless situation. If homeless women and children are to be helped, they require assistance to secure permanent housing. This will eliminate the need for public assistance and promote community well-being.