Category: Supporting Survivors

A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words

This board sits on the wall of an office at our emergency shelter. It is one of the ways that the team keeps track of calls for support and services that come in – day and night – on our 24/7 hotline. Isabel, our Director of Residential Programs tallied them up and shared that in March alone, we received over 150 calls from survivors who needed…

The Gift of Feeling

As we find ourselves approaching holidays that look and feel different, may we give ourselves…

7 Ways You Can Support Survivors In Your Community During COVID-19

We are living in unprecedented times, surrounded by uncertainty. Last week a wise friend of mine said, “every day is a week, every week is a month, and every month is a year.” I’ve never heard words that felt more true. As many of us have shifted to hunkering down in our homes, we at REACH are hearing about increasing needs from survivors of domestic violence….

Supporting the Supporters

May is Mental Health Month, which has been observed since 1949. Mental Health Month helps to raise awareness about the importance of mental health and to stop the negative stigma that is often associated with it. Our mental health is so important because it affects every aspect of our lives, including how we think, act, and feel. In honor of Mental Health Month, we interviewed REACH’s…

Tips for Supporting Survivors During the Holidays

The holidays can be a very difficult time of year for many, including survivors of domestic violence.  For many survivors, the holidays may be a time when they are forced to make the difficult decision to miss time with loved ones, as family gatherings may mean coming face-to-face with their abuser. While we are always here to listen and offer support, we know that many survivors…

Believing Survivors: Letting go of Blame

“You shouldn’t have been wearing high heels!” – Mother to daughter who was assaulted on her way home from work “Truthfully, I was a very sexual girl. I really don’t think he was at fault because I was just so promiscuous, he couldn’t help it.” – Adult survivor, describing sexual abuse she experienced as a five-year-old child “I’m so sorry you had to come out in…

How to Support a Loved One who is Experiencing Abuse (and why this can be so hard)

Throughout my career, including just yesterday, I have received calls from friends and family who are concerned that someone they love is experiencing abuse. These calls often start with the sentence, “I’m looking for some advice…” and I can hear in their voices how deeply worried they are, and how much they hope that I can provide an answer for them.  As I do with each of these calls,…