Jane Doe was being plagued by the verbal abuse of one of her family members. Threats were not just aimed at her, but other members of her family as well. As time passed, the offender became more erratic, violent, and unpredictable, forcing Jane to seek action.
Jane and her family came to us in search of a protective order, however the family did not want to testify against the offender, and the order initially could not be made. In response, we urged them to be extra careful, giving them safety advice and urging them to call the police immediately if their abusive relative’s behavior escalated.
Within a few days, we received a call saying that the relative had indeed attacked Jane and her family. Luckily, they only suffered minor injuries before the authorities arrived and detained the abuser. Immediately after their detainment, we began working to get them a Magistrate’s Emergency Order of Protection, which was granted within the month. With our help, this family had the resources to resolve an abusive situation, and minimize the risk of future abuse.
A Children’s Transition Story
This month we had a mother who came to our shelter with her children. She was abused and the children were extremely upset and crying. They had just watched their family be torn apart.
As our advocates started the intake process with the mother, I took the children to the playroom. Our “Child Safe” program focuses on building conflict resolution skills and using art/play therapy techniques to help the children understand and process their emotions in such terrifying times.
As a children’s movie began to play, I laid out markers, crayons, and construction paper so that the children could draw pictures of how they feel. After the movie, one of the older children volunteered to read to the younger ones during story time. To wrap up the session, I brought out the keyboard and let the children play along with a children’s music CD.
In this particular case, I was able to see the children go from extremely sad and afraid, to very happy and content. I am so glad that we were here for them, and able to help during this crisis situation.
After enduring years of abuse at the hand of her husband, advocates were able to help a client successfully get her husband out of her house and secure a protective order keeping him away. She was overwhelmed with joy after the Judge ruled in her favor, and has expressed her gratitude for the time and effort that advocates were able to provide for her. She has now filed for divorce and says she will forever be grateful for the ladies that empowered her to stand up for herself and put an end to the nightmare that she felt would eventually kill her.
Jane Smith came to our office with her children. Her abuser was extremely violent and had served multiple prison terms for violent crimes. She had been beaten and the children, who were still in their pajamas were terrified.
Staff from the Shelter and Main Office began working the case by seeing to the immediate needs of safety for the family and food for the children.
Jane was assisted with clothing from our donation supply and a staff member was sent to the store to buy underwear and clothing for the children.
Jane's family and the children stayed with us at the shelter until we could arrange them being reunited. Jane and her children were each provided a backpack with snacks, drinks and extra clothes. Toys and books were packed to keep the children occupied on the trip.
She arrived safely and is still in contact with her DVP Advocate to give updates and for help with some ongoing local issues.
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