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Houston Breakthrough 1979-06
Page 16
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Houston Breakthrough 1979-06 - Page 16. June 1979. Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. April 17, 2014. http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist/item/912/show/903.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(June 1979). Houston Breakthrough 1979-06 - Page 16. Houston and Texas Feminist and Lesbian Newsletters. Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist/item/912/show/903

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Houston Breakthrough 1979-06 - Page 16, June 1979, Houston and Texas Feminist and Lesbian Newsletters, Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries, accessed April 17, 2014, http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist/item/912/show/903.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Houston Breakthrough 1979-06
Publisher Breakthrough Publishing Co.
Date June 1979
Subject.Topical (LCSH)
  • Women--Texas--Periodicals
  • Feminism--United States--Periodicals
Subject.Geographic (TGN)
  • Houston, Texas
Genre (AAT)
  • periodicals
Language English
Physical Description 24 page periodical
Format (IMT)
  • image/jpeg
Original Item Location http://library.uh.edu/record=b2332724~S11
Digital Collection Houston and Texas Feminist and Lesbian Newsletters
Digital Collection URL http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/feminist
Repository Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries
Repository URL http://info.lib.uh.edu/about/campus-libraries-collections/special-collections
Use and Reproduction Educational use only, no other permissions given. Copyright to this resource is held by the content creator, author, artist or other entity, and is provided here for educational purposes only. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without written permission of the copyright owner. For more information please see the UH Digital Library Fair Use policy on the “About” page of this website.
File name index.cpd
Item Description
Title Page 16
Subject.Topical (LCSH)
  • Women--Texas--Periodicals
  • Feminism--United States--Periodicals
Repository Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries
Use and Reproduction Educational use only, no other permissions given. Copyright to this resource is held by the content creator, author, artist or other entity, and is provided here for educational purposes only. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without written permission of the copyright owner. For more information please see the UH Digital Library Fair Use policy on the “About” page of this website.
File name femin_201109_551o.jpg
Transcript Displaced Homemakers Counselor Eileen Elfant (1) and Carroll Creswell, project coordinator, work with the Houston Center for Displaced Homemakers. The program was funded by a one year grant from the Texas Education Agency. by Hildegard Warner June is the month of brides and weddings. In the middle class dream a woman marries and directs all her energies into her family. She maintains a well-kept home and children, and supports and encourages her husband's career. In return she reaps the rewards of a comfortable lifestyle and never wants for anything. But for millions of women each year, the dream has been shattered, the rules have been changed. Either through widowhood or divorce, they are left holding the bag. Homemaker skills are not honored in the market place. The responsibility of finding a job and caring for children and household alone is a tremendous new burden. Women in this situation are displaced homemakers. In recent years their numbers have increased and their problems become more acute. No-fault divorce has provided an easy way out of marriages, some of long standing, for both men and women. Changes in communities and lifestyles have left women alone without extended families or community roots which have in the past protected them. Indeed, the women's movement has called for women to become independent and no longer cling to their families for physical support or protection. Society has changed the rules. The experiences and problems displaced homemakers have faced have been brought to the attention of society and its lawmakers by women's groups including the Alliance for Displaced Home- makers. Due to their efforts, the Texas legislature has funded two displaced homemaker centers, in Arlington and Victoria, for a third year of operation. A third center in Houston was financed in 1978 by a one-year, $49,943 grant from the Texas Education Agency (TEA) to the Institute of Labor and Industrial Relations at the University of Houston Central Campus. These centers are designed to help displaced homemakers (women ages 35-64, married 15 years or longer) prepare themselves for the job market. They offer personal counseling and hold workshops. They give employment assistance by helping women assess their strengths, prepare a resume, learn interview skills, and they also provide job placement assistance. All of these services are free. publicity and the news media aren't broad enough to bring enough people in," Elf ant said. "A lot of women who really need our help don't know about the program." Although the center's guidelines allow up to 20 women in a workshop, usually only half that number participate. Elf ant says more television exposure would be very helpful. "After Phil Donahue had a discussion of displaced homemakers on his program several months ago, we got a number of calls," she said. During its first year the center has also established a number of community linkages to bring eligible women into the program. Women are referred to the "At first calls came in for jobs wanting slave labor. They thought that was all these women could do. Now we are getting a higher quality of job orders from companies who value the mature women." The Houston center opened in July, 1978, and its two counselors have conducted 10 four-week workshops on the campus, plus several miniworkshops at other locations in the Houston area. The first year has been mainly one of building the program, letting the community know the center was open to them, and getting other agencies and support services to participate in the workshops and offer jobs to the women, according to Eileen Elfant, one of the counselors. "We need an enormous amount of center through WIRES (Women's Information Referral and Exchange Service), Women for Justice, Harris County Social Service and the social work staff at Ben Taub Hospital. "All the women's groups know about us," Elfant said, "but these are not the women who need our help. The people we see have been primarily in the home and have not even joined women's groups." Even though the women may hear about the program, many do not respond immediately. "When we ask the women how they found out about the center, many say they have had an article lying around the house for two months," Elfant said. "It takes them a long time to activate themselves to call and ask. So, how many women are still sitting at home looking at an article? "They tend to ignore it until they have to admit to the change and accept the title of displaced homemaker," she said. "They feel antagonistic and fight with the title. "Calling the center and deciding to participate in the program is making a commitment. These women have led lives which were void of time commitments outside of their personal sphere. In the past, it was easy for them to break appointments with others and with themselves for immediate gratification without thinking it through, because they didn't have goals." "We work a lot on long and short term goals in the program and emphasize to these women that they have a choice of what they want to do," Carroll S. Creswell, project coordinator, added. "Some of them have never had to make choices before." Although most displaced home- makers' programs are written for women who have no means of support, who "fall between the cracks" in the welfare or social security system, Elfant said most of the women who come into the center have some kind of income, social security or alimony. "We know there is a big group who don't have any income," Elfant said, "but they are not coming here." The four-week workshops are designed to give them skills and information to help them make proper choices and set goals. "The two biggest problems these HOUSTON BREAKTHROUGH 16 JUNE 1979