DomesticShelters.org is quickly becoming one of the most looked-to resources for information on abuse and resources for survivors. In the 3 years since its inception, the website has seen approximately 3 million visitors.
But what about those on the frontlines of advocacy—the shelter managers, the caseworkers, the counselors, the hotline operators—how have the resources offered through DomesticShelters.org helped them? We posed the question to our nearly 3,000 shelter and domestic violence nonprofit directors and leaders who are a part of the DomesticShelters.org searchable directory, and here were some of their answers.
1. Share Articles Online and Offline
“DomesticShelters.org has been a huge help with my domestic violence support group called OMG! Supercharged Support For Domestic Violence Victims. I post all your articles on my group page for members to read and we discuss some things as well. The articles truly answer a lot of silent questions victims and survivors want to ask but are hesitant to ask. This helps communication between members so that they may be a support system for one another. As a domestic violence victim who advocates for other domestic violence victims, these articles assist me in being a better advocate by affording me the opportunity to educate myself about domestic violence more to prepare me on how to properly deal with all different types of domestic violence situations.”
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“As a survivor and an advocate, I only wish we had access to your lifesaving materials back in my day. I've copied helpful stories and put them in my Facebook notes to share with the public. Thank you for all you do.”
“I love your articles! They are well written yet easy to read, and you have such a variety of subjects. I've been able to further my knowledge to better assist clients. Also, great for sharing on Facebook!”
Advocates: You can instantly install any number of customizable DomesticShelters widgets on your website that will provide direct access to our entire domestic violence article library. You can also share our articles by going into an individual article and clicking on the “+” sign underneath any article headline. From here, it’s easy to choose an option such as printing the piece or sharing it via email, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Tumblr or a number of other platforms.
2. Sign Up for a Weekly Email
“As an advocate, I find the articles and resources very helpful to use both as a refresher and to learn something new. I print and file articles to share with clients. I also give clients your website to explore topics that will meet their individual situations. I always look forward to opening the weekly newsletter.”
Advocates: You can sign up for our weekly newsletter here.
3. Instantly Find Shelters in Any ZIP Code
“DomesticShelters.org has been a helpful resource when working with families in locating shelters in North Carolina, and around the country.”
Advocates: Helping a survivor in another city or state, or one who is looking to relocate? Find a shelter or other resources in any area of the U.S. and Canada by entering the city, state or ZIP in the search tool on our home page.
4. Help Survivors Prepare for Court
“It has been a tool that is used to help educate victims of domestic violence when preparing for court, strategies for documenting abuse, and custody issues. It is a great resource and very user friendly.”
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It is easy to ignore this message. Please don't. We and the millions of people who use this non-profit website to prevent and escape domestic violence rely on your donations. A gift of $5 helps 25 people, $20 helps 100 people and $100 helps 500 people. Please help keep this valuable resource online.
5. Help Survivors Feel Connected
“I look forward every week to getting this email. It helps so much to know I am not the only one trying to get away from a violent partner. We have a two-year-old together. I read each article and it helps my soul heal. Thank you so much for how open you are about domestic violence—your articles are amazing. They make me feel like I'm in a group session just by receiving your emails. Keep up the great work our angels.”
Advocates: Let survivors know they’re not alone. We operate one of the most active Facebook pages on the topic where survivors collaborate and support one another. Referring to our Survivor Stories may help a survivor realize they’re not the only one going through abuse and see strategies others have used to successfully escape and thrive. The Domestic Violence Forum and Chats page can also help survivors find online support.
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If you would like to speak with a local advocate by phone, please visit www.domesticshelters.org/help and enter your zip code for a list of nearby hotline numbers. You can also start an online chat at www.thehotline.org. Choose your preferred option by clicking one of the green icons.SPEAK WITH SOMEONE CHAT WITH SOMEONE