There is a classic television show whose theme song sums up a core human need “you want to go where everybody knows your name.” It is a yearning for community, place, and safety that sometimes is hard to find. However, that is the exact type of feeling and community that the Cascade Women’s Program creates.
Danielle Green is the program manager for our affordable housing program for chronically unhoused or women with disabilities located in South Lake Union. She has made it her mission to build a community that holds space for people no matter where they are in their lives.
“We are meeting a need that wasn’t being met,” Danielle said. “This is permanent housing that is open to all women. We accept people for who they are and work with them to get even better.”
The program is one of Compass’ oldest housing programs and includes holistic case management that gives a wide range of services.
“You have to have the right kind of spirit to do this work,” Danielle said. “You have to treat people with dignity, respect their boundaries but still push for them to open up and help create that community.”
One of the more popular ways? Foodbank day.
“By having the food delivered here, we are in control,” Danielle said. “We can make sure that everyone here is treated with kindness and understanding and since COVID changed the world, it is a way to safely, socially distanced get together around the table, so to speak.”
Cascade is a community. The program is located in the heart of South Lake Union, uses a shared community kitchen, and built around a suite-style of apartments.
Cheri, one of the residents has lived at Cascade for more than three years and considers coming to live there a life-changing event.
“This place and these people have given me a do-over in life,” Cheri said. “I’ve gotten healthier, reassessed my life, and made real friends here. And all the case managers and the staff here are all incredibly supportive. They hear you and they make you feel safe. I’m safe here.”