Coburn Place is an Invaluable Safe Haven
“Everyone deserves a safe home.” This is the tagline of Coburn Place, a transitional housing facility for women and children fleeing domestic violence. The agency, located at 604 E. 38th Street, has 35 fully furnished and decorated apartments in which families can live for up to two years.
I recently joined Women’s Fund volunteers and donors on an agency tour. We learned Coburn Place isn’t typically the first place a woman goes when fleeing domestic violence – she usually goes to a shelter. Then she might apply for housing at Coburn Place.
Unfortunately, there are currently 98 families on the waitlist, which isn’t unusual. Women and their families typically wait 8-12 months to get in. Families on the waitlist are referred to other agencies, but there are very few transitional housing beds in the community. How dangerous and frustrating it must be for families to know there is safe housing but there isn’t space!
The average income of women when moving in is $3,800. While living at Coburn Place, women work on self-sufficiency and breaking the cycle of violence through job training, therapy, business ownership training, support groups and GED tutoring. The agency also provides programming, life skills development, summer camp and tutoring to residents’ children.
Although residents don’t pay rent, the agency calculates what their rent would be based on their income and sets up an account in which that amount is deposited. The women then have savings that can be used when they move out. Coburn Place has recently hired a housing specialist to help women find safe and permanent housing once they leave the facility. Since all of the furniture is donated, the women typically get to take their furniture with them to their new homes (so the agency is always looking for furniture and household donations!)
To learn more or get connected with Coburn Place, go to www.coburnplace.org.