From the desk of SCVP Board of Director’s President
Dear Friend and Supporter,
Here is a letter from a resident at Madeline’s House to other residents I thought you would like to read.
“A few months ago, I left an abusive home, not knowing where I was to go, whether anyone cared, or whether it was the end of me. The ride was long, but I had encouraging friends at Madeline’s House I’d not met who were waiting for me. Finally I arrived at this safe place, a temporary home, to find me a new beginning. I was finally safe. They did it all for me. Now it’s your turn to go on your journey. I’m writing to let you know someone is waiting for you…your room is ready. The light is on, the door is open and you are expected! I know through Jesus’ strength you will make it through. God may not give us an easy journey to the promised land, but he will give us a safe one.”
So many times we receive uplifting letters like this one. Madeline’s House represents many things to those traumatized by violence. To some it’s a clear direction away from a life of fear, neglect and isolation. To others, the most important thing is a warm friendly hug from someone who cares. Always, Madeline’s House is that breath of relief that comes when a new resident finally feels safe as she enters the shelter’s front door.
The holiday season is just around the corner, and as we approach this season of love, hope and giving, I ask that you consider continuing your financial support of Madeline’s House. Your generosity will help sustain the shelter, basic needs of the residents, and all the services available our residents and community clients. As a supporter, you have several gift options
- You can send a one-time gift, or make a monthly / quarterly pledge
- You can charge your donation to your credit card, or send a check.
You can mail your donation to us, or make your donation online at www.madelineshouse.org
- You can double your gift by getting your employer to match it, and
- You can give to the 120 x 12 project ($120 monthly pledge for 12 nights stay at the shelter)
You can make a Legacy Gift through our planned giving / charitable remainder trust program.
Thank you for remembering Madeline’s House this holiday season! May your holiday blessing be many!
Scott Edwards, President
There are approximately 90,000 women living in SCVP’s 12 county area. 1 in 3 (or approximately 30,000) of these women are or have been victims of domestic violence. 1 in 6 women (or approximately 15,000) are or have been victims of sexual violence. Unfortunately, these staggering statistics will only increase unless Madeline’s House can continue its mission of rescue and survival. Madeline’s House is the only shelter to which these women can turn for safe haven in south central Virginia. In addition to its sheltering services, Madeline’s House provides services and programs to community clients in these local communities through its 8 satellite locations.
Safety tips for victims and those helping victims during the holidays …
Tip Number 1: Put the right numbers on speed-dial. If you have a mobile phone, make sure to put the following numbers of speed-dial/in your address book:
The national Domestic Violence helpline (1-800-799-7233)
The local Domestic Violence shelter helpline wherever you will be spending Christmas (Madeline’s House 1-888-819-2926)
The local police department
The number of a close friend, co-worker or family member who can be on standby to get you out of the situation or act as witness.
For those who fear that their phone may be taken away from them, memorize all important numbers so, if need be, you can call from a safe place.
Tip Number 2: Have a ‘Safe’ word/phrase. In violent or emergency situations, you may not be able to text or say much. Have an agreed ‘safe’ word or phrase with your close friend/co-worker or family member who agrees to have their phone on standby to receive any emergency calls/texts. Keep it short and simple.
Tip Number 3: Keep your phone (and some money) on you at all times. Also remember to keep it fully charged at all times. You will never know when a situation will erupt, so it is crucial to have it on hand, especially if you know you might be alone with your abuser. Also have cash in hand in case you need to make a run for your life.
Tip Number 4: Arrange for an ally in advance. If you are going to spend the holiday season with extended family and you know who would believe and support you, call that person in advance to ask him or her for support and intervention should a situation turn violent. This option may not be available for all victims/survivors but it would be a feasible one for many, especially if visiting their own parents, siblings, cousins etc.
Tip Number 5: Be on standby. If you suspect your friend or family member of suffering from Domestic Violence, offer to be on standby for her text or call through the holiday season. Have your phone on and fully charged at all times and keep it on you. If you have a car and need to intervene immediately, make sure that the gas tank is full so you can get in and drive to get the victim/survivor immediately if need be.
Tip Number 6: Provide some relief. If your know a Domestic Violence victim/survivor who is being kept at home without relief during the holiday season, do a random act of kindness for her: Offer to babysit the children for a few hours while the abuser is out so she can have a breather; Send over some small festive goodies such as cookies, candy or something else traditional with a kind note; Offer to pick up groceries for her on your grocery run.
Madeline’s House Opens Satellite Offices
Madeline’s House has established ten satellite offices throughout its 12 county service area. This outreach initiative will enable victims of domestic and sexual violence in this predominantly rural area to have easier access to critical services. Currently satellite offices are located in 6 strategically chosen counties allowing the greatest access to everyone in this very large service area. Future plans are to have at least one satellite office in all 12 counties.
Among services offered at these satellite offices are: personal case management and individual supportive counseling, safety planning, victim / court advocacy, assistance with obtaining protective orders and document recovery, life skills assessment and training options, assistance with job and house searches, assistance in seeking appropriate legal and medical counsel, information and referral assistance, and arrangements for sheltering if needed. All services are free and no appointment is needed. Call 1.888.819.2926 for location and satellite office hours.
Madeline’s House will continue serving victims of violence at its shelter location as it has done for 14 years. This new satellite office program is just one more way victims of abuse can reach out for help.
In addition to this new outreach effort, presentations and workshops remain available to community and professional groups. If your group would like to schedule a presentation or workshop, or if you have a personal question, call our office at 434.292.1077 or 1.888.819.2926. Our professional staff are trained and certified in many areas related to domestic and sexual violence.