Thirty-two domestic violence programs in Texas were impacted by Hurricane Harvey. The Family Services Women and Children’s Shelter was closed for 16 days and is still undergoing lots of repairs.
Countless survivors – both those in shelter, and those without – face unique vulnerabilities during this disaster. For those who have fled abuse in their homes to seek safety, the trauma of leaving is now compounded by the trauma of dealing with uncertainty, devastation, and disruption from the disaster.
Recently, a reporter from Public Radio International paid us a visit to hear what it’s like to be in the middle of a crisis and then have to deal with a natural disaster. Please listen to her piece here:
Prevention Education in an active learning environment
Hosted by Family Services Kid’s Connection Program, this free summer day camp for children ages 7-12 will focus on alcohol, tobacco, and other drug prevention, making healthy choices, goal setting, negative peer pressure and bullying. Kids will learn while having fun.
If you’ve ever been to the Family Services Women and Children’s Shelter you know that it is housed in a 60-year-old former nursing home complex. By its very nature, it is just very institutional looking.
Family Services Women and Children’s Shelter is honored to have been selected by St. Michaels as the beneficiary of this year’s Mediterranean Festival. Come out and support us on May 6th from 11am-8pm (rain or shine). Check out Shelly Vitanza’s piece from this month’s events book:
Tabouli! Pastitsio! Dolmades! OH MY! St. Michael’s Mediterranean Festival has become one of the most anticipated one-day eating events of the entire year.
On February 21, Family Services of Southeast Texas hosted the 15th Annual Celebrate Families Luncheon, an annual fundraiser benefitting the Family Services Programs including the Counseling Center, Kid’s Connection, Battering Intervention and Prevention, Supervised Visitation and Exchange, and the Beaumont and Jasper Women and Children’s Shelter.
We are pleased to announce that through generous sponsorships, ticket sales, and an amazing raffle, Family Services raised more than $36,000!
This year’s honorees were:
We like to extend a huge thank you to our sponsors who helped us raise over $36,000 at this year’s Celebrate Families Luncheon!
At our most recent Southeast Texas Domestic Violence Task Force Panel Discussion, the experts focused on prevention. As victims advocates, we so often hear “Break the Silence… Break the Silence… BREAK THE SILENCE!”
That really is the main problem. To highlight that fact, we started the Panel event by watching a true story about a young mother named Amy that was murdered by her husband. Throughout the description of events, the audience is confronted with the sobering reality that Amy’s friends, family, coworkers, and even police and healthcare workers knew she was being abused.
And he still murdered her. At the end, the audience was left wondering what could have been done differently. And the Panel was ready with answers.
So often, we hear “why didn’t she just leave?”
Sgt. Yvette Borrero of BPD points out that “most women will take eight beatings before they leave.” It’s a sad statistic, but it’s true. At the Family Services Women and Children’s Shelter, we often see the same individual more than once.
Gasps, sighs, and sounds of exasperation were all that could be heard in the room of 70+ people. The documentary they were watching was moving and tragic. It wasn’t surprising to see jaws agape, heads shaking in disbelief.
But for the seasoned law enforcement and victims advocates in the room, “Telling Amy’s Story” was full of truths that were all too familiar.