• Chanell

    After the loss of her daughter's father, Chanell struggled to find housing stability. With YWCA St. Paul's Rapid Re-Housing program and her own determination, Chanell found an apartment that she has made a home for her and her two daughters, and finally had the security and capacity to accomplish a longstanding goal: getting her GED. Watch Video
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  • Australia

    The YWCA St. Paul's transitional housing program gave Australia the support she needed, but what she did for the YWCA St. Paul goes beyond one family. Watch Video
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  • Irina

    Irina came to the YWCA from a domestic violence shelter. At the YWCA she and her children found not only a safe place to call home but also the support they needed to begin a new life. Watch Video
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  • Shalonda

    After spending more than a decade in an abusive relationship, Shalonda made the courageous decision to break away. In our Transitional Housing Program, she's made a new start for herself and her daughter. Watch Video
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  • Rozan

    As a participant in the Permanent Supportive Housing Program, Rozan has not only made a home for herself and her daughters, but continues to make incredible strides toward obtaining her GED. Watch Video
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  • Shanika

    As a participant in YWCA St. Paul's Transitional Housing Program, Shanika has made a new start for herself and her family. Watch Video
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Shalonda

Breaking Away From Abuse

For 14 years, Shalonda endured domestic violence. Although she was afraid for her life, she didn’t think she was strong enough to leave. It was her daughter, Aniya, who helped her to find the courage. “I’m raising a young girl,” she explains. “And she’s going to grow up to be a woman—I had to let her know that what she saw me going through was not okay.”

Determined to make a new life for herself and her daughter, Shalonda fled to a shelter and later, enrolled in our Transitional Housing Program. Although starting over is a daunting task, with support and encouragement Shalonda began to believe in herself and to set ambitious goals.

She always regretted dropping out of school as a teen and made earning a GED her first goal. Within six months, she achieved her goal and the success inspired her to dream bigger. “I was proud of myself,” she says. “That’s when I told myself I could go further.”

Today Shalonda has completed her first year of college and plans to pursue a degree in criminal justice. A new life in front of her, she knows that she and Aniya are on the right track. In just two short years everything has changed. “I feel like I’m stronger, I’m wiser and I respect myself,” she says.

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“I feel like I’m stronger, I’m wiser and I respect myself.”