The Women’s Housing, Equality and Enhancement League (WHEEL) is a non-profit and non-hierarchical group of homeless and formerly homeless women working on ending homelessness for women. WHEEL is all about empowerment and action.
WHEEL is the women-only, women-concerned sister organization to SHARE (Seattle Housing and Resource Effort). Both WHEEL and SHARE provide self-managed shelters—including Tent Cities.
WHEEL works to get women out of the places where they have been hiding, recognize each woman as an individual and involve women in the process of improving programs and creating new programs for their own needs.
WHEEL’s goals are to give voice and leadership to homeless women, to organize campaigns around increased services and safety for women, and to develop and support self-managed shelters.
Since 1993, WHEEL has initiated many campaigns that have improved the lives of all women. Our efforts have included:
Current Projects:Women in Black silent witnessing vigils are held whenever a homeless person dies outside in King County. After notification of a death, we stand the following Wednesday, from noon to 1 PM outside the Seattle Justice Center (at 5th and Cherry Streets). In 2015, at least 66 people died outside or by violence! We've stood for more than 600 people since we started these vigils in the year 2000. To get on our email notification list for vigils, please write firstname.lastname@example.org
Homeless Remembrance Project, public places to honor and remember homeless people who have died. We've worked with church and community leaders for the past seven years, and are now working with designers toward siting a "Tree of Life" sculpture and celebratory gathering place at Victor Steinbrueck Park near Pike Place Market, and installing "Leaves of Remembrance," with names, in sidewalks in Seattle. For more information about this project, please visit FallenLeaves.org or on Facebook at facebook.com/pages/Homeless-Remembrance-Project/184372257014
Tent City3is a self-managed camp of up to 100 homeless women, men, and couples, which rotates among churches/spaces mainly in Seattle which we co-sponsor with SHARE.
Tent City4 is a 100-person self-managed camp in suburban Seattle, mainly the Eastside which we co-sponsor with SHARE.
Tent City5 Interbay is a 60-person self-managed camp on City land at 3234--17th West, near West Dravus, which we co-sponsor with SHARE.
Shelter for Women: For the past several years there has been a severe lack of shelter for homeless women. Our current projects and campaigns include: facilitation and staffing of our own large, low-barrier WHEEL Shelter for Women, which is open year-round, 8:30 PM to 6:30 AM at Sacred Heart Hall (204 Warren Avenue North). This shelter started 15 years ago as a Severe Weather Shelter; our advocacy made it year-round and permanent! We also often are Organizing for Provision of More Shelter for Women.
The Women’s Empowerment Center is a self-managed day organizing, arts and education center for women.
The Dorothy Day Group works for more housing, food, dignity, power and community among homeless women. We currently have two projects: Sandwichmaking and distributing sandwiches at local parks, and producing and distributing our own newsletter, The Occasional Times.
Beloved Community: The Sisterhood of Homeless Women in Poetry is a beautifully-bound anthology of poetry by homeless and formerly homeless women collected by WHEEL over many years, published by Whit Press in 2007.
Women’s Empowerment Center (new location!)
The Occasional Times Newsletter
Weekly Organizing Meetings
1 PM Mondays at Mary's Place Community Center (1830 Ninth Avenue)
AND 1 PM Thursdays at Angeline's Day Center (3rd/Lenora)
Strategizing meetings for WHEEL —every homeless/formerly homeless woman has a voice and vote.
Breakfast & Education Project
Thursdays, 8:30 AM—11:30 AM Now year-round!
Antioch University (6th & Battery)
A collaborative effort of WHEEL, the Sisters Project and Antioch, this project offers breakfast, workshops and activities.
Women in Black
Mailing Address: P. O. Box 2548
Street Address: between 3rd & 2nd off Stewart, alley entrance behind Josephinum
Phone: (206) 956-0334
Fax: (206) 448-2389