Homeless women put their skills to work

Participants can be seen selling their products at various community events.

For 20 years, the Tomorrow Project has taken a simple but effective strategy for addressing homelessness: beans.

What originally started as the Women's Bean Project transformed to the Tomorrow Project, a work-readiness training program geared toward empowering homeless women in San Diego. The project has served more than 1,000 women since its inception.

The Tomorrow Project was born from observing women at shelters in San Diego and their inability to harness their skills to find a job.

Holy Spirit Sr. RayMonda DuVall, executive director of Catholic Charities for the San Diego diocese, and Martha Ranson, the agency's director of homeless women's services, "looked for a way to develop a sort of 'cottage industry' where the women would be able to use their skills productively throughout the day that would hopefully lead to a job," said Shayna Jennings Weider, current program manager of the project. 

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A version of this story appeared in the July 1-14, 2016 print issue under the headline: "Homeless women put their skills to work" .

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