Hi! I'm Monika!
Hi! I’m Monika, I’m a social worker providing therapeutic supports to Do Good participants.
I’ve been doing social work for 10+ years. Most of my experience in this field has been working with people experiencing chronic houselessness who are also impacted by compounding barriers to accessing and engaging in services such as: domestic/sexual violence, neurodiversity, addiction, and complex mental health issues. In my therapeutic work I specialize in supporting those impacted by neurodiversity and mental health issues, specifically compulsive behaviors and unusual perceptions.
I believe that housing is a human right, and that shifting our community’s response to houselessness is a crucial component of any homeless social service program. I am passionate about affordable housing advocacy and increasing the accessibility of our current homeless services. I understand those accessing our services to be our most important stakeholders and I believe in participant led programming and participant centered service delivery.
I began doing this work after experiencing my own challenges in life relating to mental health issues, brain injury, and trauma. Getting to a place of stability after these experiences was challenging, but due to my social location and support networks, it was possible. During this time, I became concerned with the experiences of others facing similar challenges, without the same privileges and supports I had. In response, I decided to start volunteering at Rosehaven, a day shelter for women and families. During my time at Rosehaven I had the opportunity to get to know Rosehaven participants. After hearing the stories of Rosehaven participants and learning more about their experiences, I came to realize that we as a society have it backwards. We treat the people who have been through the most, the people with the greatest insight, resilience, and wisdom regarding how we can improve our society’s response to our most pressing social justice issues, the very worst. When we devalue the wisdom and experiences of these individuals, we not only cause them harm; we also miss out on crucial perspectives, solutions, and relationships with a population who has so much to teach us. I decided to make this work my career.
I began volunteering at PWCL, now Call to Safety, and eventually I began working there full time providing supports to survivors of domestic violence experiencing houselessness. Since that time I have had the opportunity to work with some wonderful organizations, including Do Good, and On the Move Community Integration. I also completed my MSW from USC.
I love what I do, and I love doing this work with Do Good. When I’m not working I like to drum, run, lift, and hang out with my pup Frankie.