Helping domestic violence victims navigate

the journey to self-sufficiency.

Each minute, twenty people become victims of intimate partner violence according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. This rate is even higher in economically-distressed areas, where families experiencing high levels of financial strain are more than three times as likely to experience domestic violence as those who are not. LUCHA founded the Project Jumpstart transitional housing program in 2007 to address the needs of these low-income survivors. It does so by helping survivors safely remove themselves from violent relationships, achieve socio-economic independence from their abusers, and connect them with the necessary resources to begin healing from their trauma.

While the program is open to all survivors, it specializes in serving immigrants and Latinos within financially distressed areas, given these groups have an especially difficult time accessing domestic violence services as a result of social and/or geographic isolation, fear of legal repercussions (e.g. deportation, loss of child custody, etc.), language barriers, cultural norms regarding marriage or relationships, economic disadvantage, etc.

For more information, please call 773.276.5338 x 257 or email


In order to qualify, survivors must meet three requirements: (1) Be fleeing (and are able to document) a domestic violence scenario; (2) Be a City of Chicago resident; and (2) Have sufficient income to pay the difference between their monthly rent and the amount of rental assistance provided.

Rental Insurance

Survivors receive 6-to-24 months of rental and deposit assistance ranging from $300 to $500. The specific amount is determined by income, market rents, and the heuristic (as taught by LUCHA and other HUD-approved housing agencies) which limits rent to ~30% of one’s income.

Safety Planning 

Survivors begin by developing a safety plan which provides a course of action within several safety scenarios. Staff conduct role playing exercises with clients to help them develop action plans to deal with each safety scenario. This role playing includes discussion on technology safety

Supportive Services

Survivors develop a case management plan which feature a self-sufficiency goal. Clients also enroll in relevant social services throughout the term of the program, including group therapy, legal assistance, childcare, employment counseling and job placement, utility assistance, and other benefits.