Pittsburgh Emergency Housing Is Open!

The Refuge for Women Emergency Housing Pittsburgh program is designed to offer women immediate access to temporary housing, crisis intervention, and other support services. The emergency housing program provides emergency shelter for female survivors of sex trafficking and sexual violence/exploitation. Our program is free to our clients; we do accept payments from Medicaid through Managed Care Organization and other third-party payments. We are unable to serve women with children that also need housing or women in need of a medically supervised detoxification program.

About Refuge for Women Pittsburgh

What does sex trafficking look like in Pittsburgh? Click below to learn more about the need for Emergency Housing in our city.

Work With Us!

Refuge for Women Pittsburgh is currently hiring the following position(s).

Direct Service Worker

The Direct Service Worker’s duties in the safe house during the assigned shift is to maintain a safe healing environment for residents and provide consistent operations by upholding the program model and resident guidelines.


2nd Annual Tea & Totes Purse Bash

May 4, 2024 10:00AM  |  Grace Community Church | Join us for our 2nd Annual Tea & Totes Purse Bash where you can enjoy a ...
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Volunteer Training

Are you looking for a way to serve others in Pittsburgh? Looking for a way to give back by sharing your time and talents?  Refuge ...
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Invite Refuge For Women To Present

Awareness, prevention, and identification is critical!  Bring Refuge to Women Pittsburgh to your group, office, school, hospital, human service provider, or criminal justice agency to learn more.

For more information, contact michele.margittai@refugeforwomen.org.

Stories of Hope

Jackie Graduates from Emergency Home

Jackie* was first sold for sex by a family member when she was five years old. Now in her late 30s, she has been trafficked ...
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Second Graduate of Refuge for Women Pittsburgh – Janie’s Story

Janie* arrived at Refuge for Women Pittsburgh after being released from serving almost 2 years in jail for drug and gun possession. Janie* arrived at Refuge for ...
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First Resident Graduates Emergency Housing Program

Refuge for Women Pittsburgh celebrates the graduation of its first resident, “Virginia,” who has successfully completed our 90 day Emergency Housing and stabilization program and has been ...
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House Needs


Thank you for helping us to take care of our emergency home and residents!  Please note that we are not currently accepting clothing or furniture donations.

We are so grateful for your generous heart! You can order directly from our Amazon registries below or you may drop off your donation at our office, 81 S. 13th Street, PIttsburgh PA 15203.

Everyday Essentials List
Our Everyday Essential List has items that the we need on an ongoing basis.  View our Everyday Essentials List on Amazon.com

Wish List
Our Wish List contains items that are bigger, one time purchases. View our Wish List on Amazon.com

Fundraiser Wish List
Our Events List contains items that we need for fundraising events or to create basket raffles that will raise money for operating expenses. View our Fundraiser wish List on Amazon.com

Give. Shop. Serve.

Give monthly. Give once. Just give. All donations help restore hope.

Shop for artisan candles,  and leather goods crafted by our survivors.

Offer your time and talents for the benefit of our mission.

Give. Serve.

Give monthly. Give once. Just give. All donations help restore hope.

Offer your time and talents for the benefit of our mission.


Michele Margittai

Development Director

Roni Milich

Community Engagement Coordinator

Sarah Medina

Emergency Services Director

Rachel Cornelius

Program Services Director

Karleigh Maide

Assistant Program Director

Ann Crisci

Targeted Case Manager

Board of Directors

Linda Kricher

Linda Kricher is the Chief Human Resources Officer of Net Health. She previously served as Vice President of Human Resources for McKesson Corporation. Linda earned an MBA from Regent University and a Ph.D. in Workforce Education and Development from Penn State University. She has extensive experience as an Executive Coach, holding PCC credentials with the International Coaching Federation.

Linda and her husband, Lee, are the parents of two daughters and they have four grandchildren.

Rocco Magnelli
Vice Chairman

Rocco’s vast amount of police experience includes twenty years with the Sharpsburg police department – five of those years as Sergeant and twelve years as a juvenile officer. Rocco spent three years with Gateway Rehabilitation Center serving in Peer Support He worked for five years with Corporate Security and Investigations (CSI) as a Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children (CSEC)/Child Victims of Human Trafficking (CVHT) Investigator.

Currently, Rocco is the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children Case Manager for Allegheny County Children, Youth and Families.

Amber Blair

Amber Blair is a licensed social worker, board certified music therapist, and trained mediator with experience in nonprofit management and direct practice with diverse populations, including those vulnerable to human trafficking.  Amber currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer of FamilyLife Network, Inc.

Amber is excited to be involved with the Emergency Housing Pittsburgh program  because she believes the faith and evidence-based approach to aftercare will not only meet immediate needs, it will provide a safe place for women to begin restoring their  health and well-being.

Marc Cosentino

Marc is owner of Cosentino Consulting, LLC, a Pittsburgh based CPA firm, and has been a partner in several local and regional CPA firms.  His focus is on taxation and outsource CFO projects.  He graduated in 1982 with a B.S in Accounting from Wake Forest University and later attained an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh.

Marc and his wife, Donna, are natives of Pittsburgh and have 3 adult sons.  He has served in leadership for several organizations as a member of the Board of Directors and CFO/Treasurer.  These organizations include Orchard Hill Church, Resolution Hope, Wesley Family Services and the Urban Impact Foundation – ManUp task force. He is now serving as a Board member at Refuge for Women.

Brian Shivler

Brian is a native of Pittsburgh, PA and a 1985 graduate of The Pennsylvania State University with degrees in Telecommunications and Business Management. Brian currently serves as the National Sr. Vice President of Market Sales for ProgenyHealth.

In September of 2011, Brian led the launch of The Resolution Hope Project – a media driven nonprofit created to bring relief and safety to children in the United States who suffer under sexual exploitation and human trafficking.

Brian and his wife Kate have 2 daughters & reside in Pittsburgh, PA. He is active in the community and has served in various leadership and Board of Director positions for True Image Interactive, Imani Christian Academy, Urban Impact Foundation, Orchard Hill Church and currently with Refuge for Women.

Erroline Williams

Erroline Williams, PhD Erroline is an Executive Coach for The Bradley Partnerships. She coaches executives, managers, emerging leaders, and women in career transition. Erroline is a coach for the University of Pittsburgh Biomedical Program, a faculty member at the Pittsburgh Leadership Foundation, and an executive coach at Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business for The Advanced Leadership Initiative. Erroline offer over 30 years of work in the corporate environment, leading and managing teams. Erroline holds a doctorate in Higher Education Administration from the University of Pittsburgh. She has a Professional Certified Coach (PCC) as designated from the International Coaching Federation (ICF) and is a graduate of the Duquesne University Professional Coach Certification Program. Her certifications include: Emotional Intelligence EQI 2.0 and EQ 360, C-IQ Conversational Intelligence® for Coaches, and the ADAPT Career Coach Program from Duquesne University. She is a Certified Facilitator with Development Dimensions, Inc. (DDI). She serves as Vice-President of the International Coach Federation (ICF) – Pittsburgh Chapter. She created a robust coaching program for the Pittsburgh Promise, a nonprofit organization focused on urban youth.

Dara Henne

Dara Mancini Henne grew up in Beaver County and is a double graduate of the University of Pittsburgh with a Bachelor of Science degree in Neuroscience and a degree of Juris Doctorate. After working as an attorney for Reed Smith and as General Counsel for the communications company, Stargate Industries, Dara took time off of work to raise her four boys with her husband, John.

During that time, Dara continued to serve on multiple community boards, such as YoungLife Fox Chapel, Foxwall EMS, Central Catholic HS Board of Directors, CCHS Mothers’ Guild, and O’Hara Elementary School PTA.

Dara is currently working with her husband at Henne Jewelers in Shadyside and looks forward to using her legal and fundraising skills to help the women supported by Refuge for Women Pittsburgh. Dara believes the problems and hurdles faced by these women are not influenced by race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, or ability and that these issues can only be addressed by the transformative power of faith, compassion and solidarity.

Joseph E. Ryczaj

Joseph Ryczaj offers a distinguished record of service with the City of Pittsburgh Department of Public Safety, with specific training and expertise in handling complicated human trafficking cases.  Since 1995, Joe has served on the police force, starting as a Police Officer in Zone 4, and then working as a Detective in the Narcotics, Major Crimes Sex Assault, and Vice departments.  He was personally selected and continues to serve as an Officer on the FBI Pittsburgh’s Violenct Crimes Against Children/Human Trafficking Task Force, and also served as Detective on Mayor Bob O’Connor’s Security Detail.

With a degree in Speech and Communications from Geneva College, Joe has received additional training for tactical negotiations, Dark Web investigations, and protecting victims of Child Sex Trafficking.  He presents frequently on panels and at conferences to raise awareness of the issues of sex trafficking and exploitation in the Pittsburgh region.  Joe has received multiple honors, citations, and accommodations from the City of Pittsburgh, for his distinguished service record.

Contact Refuge for Women Pittsburgh

Connect with our team to learn more or get involved.
81 S. 13th Street, Pittsburgh PA 15203

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Run for Refuge

Ever wanted to try a Couch-to-5K or hit a personal best time in a 10K? Are you finally crazy enough to attempt 26.2 miles in a marathon? THIS IS YOUR CHANCE! Refuge for Women is looking for volunteers to Run for Refuge and help us raise financial support. Who exactly ...
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