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OZY / April 1, 2018
By Alex Kellogg

There are several questions you’re cautioned not to ask current or former participants in Working on Womanhood (WOW), a year-long group counseling and clinical mentoring program for teenage women from tough backgrounds active in 31 Chicago public schools. Past experiences of abuse or violence are difficult to revisit for the nearly 1,900 youth in the program.

But Monique, a 20-year-old graduate of WOW, exudes confidence and calm over the phone while sharing chilling recollections of her teenage years growing up on Chicago’s notoriously dangerous South Side. One winter, Monique and her grandmother lived without heat or running water.

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1 April 2018