Southern California Program

Didi Hirsch Community Mental Health Center

Civic and Community
Culver City, CA
$300,000
December 2015

Amid general concerns about Los Angeles’ rising homeless rate, Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services has developed a program that aims to reduce family homelessness by addressing two root causes: mothers’ untreated, serious mental illness and substance use disorder.  Launched in January 2014, Project 60 Women & Children combines onsite residential treatment for women with dual diagnoses and intensive mother-child bonding therapy to prepare the women for rapid community reintegration and reunification with their children in the foster care system.  The two phase capital project will renovate Via Avanta, a residential campus in Pacoima, which Didi Hirsch owns and has operated for over thirty years.  The outdated institutional-style buildings intended for addiction treatment will be converted into a contemporary dual-diagnosis recovery environment.  The first phase, which built out distinct treatment areas for mental health and remodeled dormitory-style rooms to give seriously ill women more privacy, has been completed. The W. M. Keck Foundation is supporting the second phase of the capital project, which will provide a better layout for children’s learning and play, more private bedrooms, rooms that support employment-oriented skill-building and physical health, and program administration areas.  When the project is completed, Via Avanta will have the space to serve a minimum of 60 women and about 100 children annually.

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