A Message From Our Social Worker

When it comes to helping our female members, there are great strides being made at Justa Center. On September 9th, Justa Center started its first women’s group aimed at helping individuals who have experienced trauma-related events. The group is thriving, and has allowed for the growth and healing of our members in a safe space. Due to the ongoing success of this group, we will be starting a second group in the middle of October that will continue to address the issue of trauma and how to move through it.  
 
Even though the population fluctuates at Justa Center, with members being housed and new members coming in, we have noted a steady need for help with the trauma-related issues that a majority of our female members are struggling with. It is our goal at Justa Center to address these issues head-on and help as many of these female members as we can through our continued support, and through both group and one-on-one counseling.
 
As we continue to build our Group Program over the next several months, Justa Center will also be participating in local events and spreading the message that we are here to offer support. One such event is the Phoenix 1st Step Drop-In Center that will be taking place on Nov 7th. This one-day drop-in center is geared toward helping women in the sex trade. Justa Center’s social worker Olivia Munoz will be in attendance to offer support during this event.
 
It is our hope that our women’s group will grow, and that more and more individuals will benefit from it. 
 
This work would not be possible without your continued support.
 
Thank you.
 

Living In The Zone

The streets are not safe for homeless individuals in general, but older people are particularly vulnerable. Justa Center is a day resource center for those individuals over the age of 55 who have nowhere to live.
 
Justa Center is the only facility in the Phoenix area that caters specifically to older homeless adults. Staff members work with individuals to locate earned benefits (e.g., social security, AHCCCS, VA), obtain housing and medical assistance, and provide referrals to other services for the poor and homeless in the community.

Justa Center acts as a safety net for people who all too often slip through the cracks. Our members are individuals who have few resources and even fewer friends and family members on whom they can count for help.

An Integral Part Of The Safety Net

An integral part of the safety net involves helping members address the problems that have caused their homelessness, which can include catastrophic medical issues, job loss, substance abuse, and/or mental health issues. Once members move out, the safety net continues, as Justa staff visit periodically to ensure they are doing well on their own.

n a given day, more than 130 homeless seniors seek help at Justa Center. Since it opened its doors in 2006, the Center has helped approximately one person escape homelessness each day.

In addition to providing access to a number of social services, Justa Center offers some unique amenities to homeless seniors, including showers, restrooms, laundry facilities, computers and Internet access, lockers, coffee, and books.
 

 

Why Are We Called "Justa Center"?

The name comes from the famous passage in Matthew (15:21-28), in which a Canaanite woman comes to Jesus, asking him to save her daughter, who is possessed by a demon. Jesus ignores her at first, and his disciples urge him to send her away. Finally Jesus answers that he was sent to help the lost sheep of Israel, and that "it is not right to take the children's food and toss it to the dogs." The woman persists, though, kneeling in front of Jesus and stating, "Yes, Lord, but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master's table." Then Jesus answered, "Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted." And her daughter was healed.

Consider the courage it took for that woman to confront Jesus in such a way. Women had little or no status at that time, and for a woman of the "wrong" religion to approach Jesus in the first place was unheard of. In order to save her daughter, though, she would not take "no" for an answer. She demanded to be noticed so that she could obtain the help she needed. While the Bible does not specifically name this Canaanite woman, a Pseudo-Clementine epistle gives her the name of "Justa," and we decided to use that name to represent all the marginalized people in our society who seek our help on a daily basis. As Justa showed us, every person has rights and deserves to be treated with dignity and respect, and that is what we attempt to do every day at Justa Center.