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Anaheim

May 07, 1999|Crystal Carreon, (714) 966-7835

Graciela Ortiz, an Interval House outreach coordinator working with the Latino community, will be honored today with a Second Chance award for her decision to leave an abusive marriage and to help other victims of domestic violence. Ortiz, 38, of Anaheim, is one of five women in California and Arizona to receive the honor, sponsored by Mimi's Cafe. She will receive $1,000 in financial aid from Mimi's at the luncheon, which will be at 2 p.m. at the chain's Anaheim restaurant. The public is invited.

Ortiz said she has taken a personal interest in her work for the last four years at Interval House, a transition home for women escaping domestic violence. She said she was trapped in a labyrinth of silence, violence and abuse during a three-year marriage. She finally left with her son on Christmas Day 1987 and took years to rebuild their lives. Today, she says, she is happy with her life and hopes to instill a sense of pride, respect and esteem in women attempting to leave abusive relationships. Information: (562) 594-9492.

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