Gathering for Women is an exceptionally well run, organized resource for homeless women. Staff is warm, friendly band supportive of the guests they serve. Meals, clothing, personal care items, shower facilities are just a few of the services provided. Case workers meet with guests to help them move forward in their lives, whatever that might look like - mental health counseling, housing, jobs. It has been a privilege to be a part of this community organization.
While most of the services provided by GFW are basic needs, our guests light up when they get something special: a piece of jewelry, hair dye, a flower. I like to bring in a houseplant or something decorative to place in the lobby to cheer up their day. It's the little things that can give a little bit of happiness in an otherwise difficult life.
Started with Gathering for Women in March 2016 - at that time the organization was only two years old - a service organization to support homeless women of the Monterey Peninsula. This organization is volunteer-centric (about 165 active volunteers) with small number of staff members (3 full-time and 3 part-time employees). Initially GFW provided a luncheon once a week for this underserved population with some support services. A Day Center opened June 2018 for our "guests" Monday through Friday; providing meals, clothes closet, showers, enrichment and career classes, and case management to assist our women helping them improve their situation with the ultimate goal to find housing. In 2019 GFW served over 900+ individual women who call Monterey home without a place to live. This organization is supported primarily by community and private donations. My volunteer/work experience is rewarding because our guests continuously show such gratefulness to have this beautiful space that serves as a safe refuge for them. And, working with a fabulous group of volunteers, like-minded and generous in their time and spirit, fills my heart.
I volunteer for Gathering for Women, and have witness the dedication and kindness that this organization extends to our women guest. I have learned so much about compassion, kindness, and patients, with this organization. To see the positive impact on the women guest as they grow with confidence through a difficult time, is reward in itself.
Gathering for Women-Monterey is an extraordinary organization. Founded only 5 short years ago, a collaboration of five women, has grown to having a corp of over 165 active volunteers and 8 part-time, full-time employees, providing needed services to homeless women on the Monterey Peninsula. Every day we see grateful smiles from uplifted faces of women who come to us to gain a sense of community, get nutritious meals, clean clothing and personal care items. Our program offers enrichment classes such as writing, painting, crafts, as well as courses on resume writing and developing interviewing skills. Staff includes case management counselors who assist our women to secure jobs, get medical and mental health services and ultimately to assist in efforts to secure housing. Each day at the Center provides insight into what can be done to improve the lives of women who have been marginalized because of factors leading to homelessness. Every day I gain more than I could ever give. I have learned that homelessness can touch anyone - ones we love and even ourselves with a death of spouse, a major illness, loss of income, domestic violence, etc. I am grateful to be in a position to provide help to this community of women.
I have been involved with Gathering for Women since February and in August I joined the Board of Directors. The organization’s impact on the unhoused and housing insecure women on the Monterey Peninsula is tremendous. Services are provided with genuine love and care. The experience is life changing for the guests we serve and the volunteers alike!
Gathering for Women does everything from the heart to help the over 1000 homeless or housing challenged women on the Monterey Peninsula. Their mission and purpose is so compelling that they have been able to raise enough money in the last five years to be able to feed women five days a week, offer clothing and vouchers, showers, job training, social services assistance, and lots of TLC. I am proud to be one of their volunteers.
I love working with Gathering for Women because I feel I have a direct impact with women in need. I like the way they value each woman, and call them "clients". I feel they constantly try to make women feel good about themselves, not make them feel like it's bad to be homeless. They have a very well organized volunteer coordinator, and I am enjoying getting to know my fellow volunteers.
One of the best run and efficient nonprofits I’ve ever encountered as a volunteer. Everyone stays focused on their mission to help find more sustainable and secure futures for women with a holistic approach to eliminating the many causes leading to homelessness. Well worth your time as a volunteer and a worthwhile investment for your donations.
After searching for 3 years for a place to volunteer, I finally found my "home" at Gathering For Women. I was, and continue to be, so impressed with the organization, the people and the outstanding work they do. The balance between running the place competently and being sensitive and caring is perfect. I am proud to be a part of Gathering.
Offering services to women who have no home, sleep in their car, or have precarious housing situations keeps me very grateful for what I am lucky enough to have. It's an honor to be part of the Gathering for Women team.