Mayor Michael C. Dow

Penelope House

Penelope House, Inc., the first shelter for battered women and their children in the state of Alabama, began under the direction of the local chapter of the Daughters of Penelope in 1978, and opened its doors to the public on March 19, 1979. During 1979, the Board of Penelope House was enlarged and expanded to become a community-based organization.

From its beginning, Penelope House offered a new social service agency for Mobile and filled the gap in needed services for women and families experiencing family violence. Averaging 42 women and children per day in shelter, Penelope House has proven to be one of Mobile's most valuable and utilized services. It is one of the few services in the area which operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Help for families experiencing domestic violence in their lives is always only a telephone call away.

Penelope House works closely with all other social service agencies within the community but particularly with the City Police Department and Sheriff's Department. Penelope House does not duplicate the services of any other agency within the community and is a unique resource.

Today Penelope House has a community-wide administrative board of thirty individuals and an advisory board of sixty individuals. In 1990, Penelope House accomplished another first by becoming the first shelter in the state to build a new facility specifically designed to serve the needs of its clients. The new facility opened in April 1990. It has approximately 14,000 square feet of space including office and administrative areas, fourteen bedrooms, living and dining rooms, kitchens and baths. The telephone number is published for clients who come from life-threatening situations, the location remains confidential.

Penelope House is currently funded by city, state and federal grants, as well as private donations. This funding is utilized to pay for shelter, outreach services, case management and counseling in order to promote independence for Penelope House clients.

CONTACT: Dr. Kathryn Coumanis, P.O. Box 9127, Mobile, AL 36691, Telephone - (334) 342-2809, Fax - (334) 342-4174.

Return to Previous Page.


Home Search

The United States Conference of Mayors

J. Thomas Cochran, Executive Director
1620 Eye Street, NW, Washington, DC 20006
Telephone (202) 293-7330, FAX (202) 293-2352

Copyright 1999, US Conference of Mayors, All rights reserved.