5 Ways Shelters Provide More Than Beds

09-30-2014 10:15 AM

Last week, The Mary Kay Foundation awarded $3 million in grants to 150 domestic violence shelters in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam.

You may wonder what the shelters do to make a long-term difference. Are they providing any lasting help to the nearly 400,000 women and children affected by domestic violence?

The answer is YES! These shelters offer much more than just a temporary bed. Every shelter that The Mary Kay Foundation gives a grant to offers multiple services to prevent women from remaining in a violent situation.

Take a look at just a sampling of what some of the shelters offer. Watch for future blogs highlighting other unique services offered by our shelters.

Work Like many shelters, My Sister’s House in Sacramento helps women get back to work, so they can be self-sufficient. This includes job referrals, transportation, clothing, childcare and career guidance.

Mental health Women and children coming from domestic violence also have a great need for counseling and support. The Women’s Center of Greater Danbury, Inc. in Connecticut offers a counseling ministry with seven support groups.

Children The Underground Railroad, Inc. in Saginaw, Michigan, understands the great need for children to reconnect with their mothers and siblings. Youth Advocates use a variety of creative techniques to help children communicate in their own way. The Underground Railroad also takes children on field trips around the area and hosts holiday parties. They even have an onsite tutor and work with children who have special needs.

Fur Family According to the American Humane Society, 71 percent of pet-owning women entering shelters reported that their pets had also been harmed by the batterer. Therefore, more and more shelters like Peace House in Park City, Utah, offer temporary shelter for family pets.

Prevention Family Support Services in Amarillo has several programs geared toward prevention including an initiative that helps teens form healthy relationships to prevent dating violence before it starts.

The Mary Kay Foundation is proud to help these shelters make a difference one family at a time.

If you are a survivor of domestic violence or have volunteered at a shelter, we’d love to hear your story.

Stacy Graves, Contributing Editor of The Mary Kay Foundation, loves to tell stories of how Mary Kay Ash’s legacy continues to make a difference for women around the globe.