Shelters are not only four walls and a roof. Once a battered woman has dealt with the immediate issues of safety and survival, she begins to address her long-range emotional and practical needs.
What kind of services does a shelter have to help battered women?
Women entering a domestic violence shelter have taken a courageous step to regain control over their lives and to ensure safety for themselves and their children. The focus in the shelter is on stabilizing their lives, helping them understand their options, and increasing their ability to achieve their goals. Shelters might offer individual and group counseling sessions with a social worker or therapist to allow a woman to talk about her experiences and sort through her feelings.
In the Safe Horizon' shelters, many of the women are focused on moving into permanent housing and getting jobs to support their children. In some of the transitional shelters, there is a housing specialist on staff to assist women in locating a permanent residence. To make the transition easier once they do find housing, shelter staff members work with women to acquire independent living skills such as financial management and household management, as well as cooking and cleaning skills.