My Nonprofit Reviews
Review for Calvary Women's Services, Inc., Washington, DC, USA
I have worked with Calvary since 1998 and this is truly a worthy organization if you're looking for a good place to invest your charitable contributions or volunteer time.
I started as an overnight volunteer and for many years spent two nights/month at the shelter. It was a pretty simple, but completely necessary task. I just had to make sure the lights in the dorm were off at 10p, the tv off at 11:30p, and then I could SLEEP!! until 6a the next morning when I had to do wake ups and set out breakfast. Talk about an easy way to volunteer. Plus, my volunteer time meant that no staff had to be paid.
In 2006, I became a Board member, and since then my commitment to Calvary has grown even stronger. While volunteering, I grew close to the staff and residents and I could see the value that Calvary gave to these women in helping them get back on their feet. However, as a Board member, I got even closer to the actual numbers. Turns out Calvary transitions a women from homelessness to her own living situation every five days.
I knew we did a lot of good to the community, but I didn't realize it was that good.
In addition, we do this on a shoestring budget. Our overhead is consistently less than 20%. Once these women get a bed in Calvary, they are no longer homeless. And Calvary has multiple programs that residents participate in to help them get back on their feet. There is mental health counseling, drug abuse counseling, job training, etc. There are life skills programs. The variety of counseling and training available are what makes Calvary such a successful program on the path to ending homelessness.
I realize that I'm very close to the situation, but I have been happily fundraising and volunteering for this group for 13 years now. I have seen inside and out the positive change this has made in the lives of these women. If you're trying to find a place to help, definitely consider Calvary.