We have served women involved in the criminal justice system since our founding in 1979 – well over 1,000 women in total. Providence House V in Prospect-Lefferts Gardens provides housing and supportive services for up to four months for 16 homeless women who would otherwise spend months at Rikers Island awaiting trial.  Along with safe shelter and healthy meals, the women in the Women's Justice Program receive self-sufficiency skills training to facilitate the transition to independent living and decrease the likelihood of a return to homelessness or incarceration. On-site staff ensure access to all needed services, including substance abuse or mental health treatment, life skills training, household budgeting and financial management, and any parole- or court-mandated services.

Aftercare services are provided for up to one year after women move into permanent housing. Women are individually served, through regular phone contact or in-home visits, as they adjust to employment, secure themselves financially, obtain healthcare, maintain independent housing, and manage other responsibilities. Aftercare contributes to the program’s success in helping participants find and keep jobs, and in turn helps maintain the program’s unparalleled low recidivism rate.

A unique aspect of the residence is the presence of three live-in Catholic sisters who form what is known as the “core community.” They are a resource to the residents in the program, providing a listening ear, informal guidance, and non-judgmental support.

TYPICALLY Fewer than 5% of women in Providence House’s Program return to INCARCERATION within a year of release, compared with more than 15% of all women paroled in New York State.