Cleveland's Seasons of Hope provides safe haven for at-risk women

CLEVELAND - You never know where you'll be when life takes you down a different road.

For Kimberly McHaney, it happened at a bus stop on Euclid Avenue in East Cleveland. It was 4 o'clock in the morning, and McHaney was homeless.

"I was feening for drugs," she said, "and I was willing to do whatever I had to do to get that next one."

It was at that moment that she saw a flyer advertising Seasons of Hope, an overnight drop-in center for women who are out on the streets with nowhere safe to go.

"Most of these women are all preyed upon and just out there in the streets and because of the addiction piece of it they're not willing to go home and deal with the family or see the kids at that moment," said Kim Fowler, the house manager.

At Seasons of Hope, the women can get a shower, something to eat and relax.  There are no questions asked, but if they want help, there are resources available.

McHaney said she believes had she not turned to Seasons of Hope, hers could have been one of the bodies found in East Cleveland last week. Instead, she's drug free, in school, has her own place to live and she's close to her family again.

"I just thank God that I was a praying addict and God was protecting me from those dangerous men out there that's taking advantage of their own sisters," she said.

Seasons of Hope is sponsored by Alcohol Drug Addiction Mental Health Services of Cuyahoga County www.adamhscc.org in partnership with the Hitchcock Center for Women www.hcfw.org.

The house is at an undisclosed location for safety reasons.  To contact Seasons of Hope, call 216-421-0536 or dial 211.

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