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Nurse listens and learns about lives of homeless women

October 7, 2009

Jean Newsome found her way to a homeless shelter because she thought she could help by offering her skills as a nurse, taking blood pressure and performing other services. She ended up providing an even greater service as a listener and a writer, recording the life stories of women who found themselves without a place to call their own.

Her book, “Homeless Heart,” documents a thread of domestic violence that runs through so many of their situations. And that brought her to the Women’s Fund, where she met Virginia Sweet and learned about the efforts of Voices Against Violence to reduce the incidents of domestic violence assaults.

“No one had ever asked these women to tell their story,” Newsome said. “They expressed with tears and thank yous what it meant for someone to simply listen.”

Newsome herself found comfort in helping someone else during a time when she was worried about her own son’s health. Today, her son is doing well, but she is still doing work as needed at Pathways, a local program for homeless women and children. And she showed up for Blogging Against Violence on Oct. 7, to lend her voice to this important conversation.

Find out more, including how to give, at The Women’s Fund website.

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