TRACY -- A five-bedroom home in Tracy will house up to 11 domestic violence survivors from across San Joaquin County and as far as Alameda County.
“They are given a new lease on life,” said Chest of Hope Founder Merlyn Pittman.
Pittman’s organization is opening a new long-term transitional house for survivors.
“We're going to host them for nine months to a year but it’s all going to be programmed. So, they'll have different classes, they'll have access to life coaches,” she explained. “It's going to be very intense but at the end of it all, they'll be employable. They would have gained skills that they never had before.”
“Some people don't even learn a new job in 30 days,” said Chest of Hope Director of Development Felicia Medrano. “So, to be able to get on your feet in 30 days and become self-sufficient for you and your children is a big task to take on.”
Many domestic violence survivors have no place to go after staying in an emergency shelter, only being allowed to stay there 30 to 45 days.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 1 in 4 women and nearly 1 in 10 men experience some type of sexual or physical violence from a partner.
“There's never enough transitional homes. There's never enough emergency shelters,” Medrano said.
Pitman said this is the first of three homes the organization is expected to open this year.
“This is for single women. The other two will be for women and children,” Pittman told FOX40.
The home is funded through grants and donations. Chest of Hope says the more money they have, the more domestic violence survivors they can help.
“We still need people's support. We still need donors. We still need monthly supporters and givers because something of this magnitude is going to cost us in excess of almost $30,000 a month," Pittman said.
See below for more information on Chest of Hope or links to domestic violence support resources: