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Parenting at a Domestic Violence Shelter: Natasha’s Story

Parenting at a Domestic Violence Shelter Natasha’s Story

Natasha sets her alarm each morning for 6:30 a.m. When it goes off, she gets out of bed and begins dressing her four-year-old son while he’s still asleep. She prods and badgers her six-year-old to start getting ready, and he grudgingly starts to stir. Once everyone’s dressed, she begins the trek by bus to get the boys to two different schools across town.

If you’re a parent, you know that getting young children up and off to school each morning is no small feat. But just imagine how much harder it would be if you didn’t have a stable place to call home.

Natasha’s Domestic Violence Story

Natasha and her kids live in one of Safe Horizon’s domestic violence shelters, and getting to school every day can be quite an ordeal. But Natasha isn’t complaining. Her life isn’t easy right now, but it wasn’t long ago that things were a whole lot worse.

Natasha lost her job, then the family lost their housing. It was then that her husband turned physically violent; assaulting Natasha and continuously threatening her. Terrified, Natasha took her sons and fled. Thankfully, she was able to find refuge at one of our confidentially-located domestic violence shelters.

Finding Hope at a Domestic Violence Shelter

Our domestic violence shelters provide supportive environments for individuals and families leaving dangerous situations – and they give survivors of abuse and their children the space to heal.

For Natasha and her sons, being welcomed at one of our domestic violence shelters was the first step in regaining a sense of safety. Natasha’s sons have their own room and they can play at the childcare facility and recreation space. Our domestic violence shelter staff do all they can to support residents like Natasha and her sons as they rebuild their lives by providing services include counseling, advocacy, court protection, and a range of other services.

The domestic violence shelter serves as a home for Natasha as she juggles her busy day. This can include getting her boys to and from school, going to check-ins with the Human Resources Administration, and meeting with potential landlords so she can find a stable home.

Bringing Hope to Domestic Violence Victims

It takes a lot of courage and resilience to heal from the wounds of domestic violence – and no one can do it alone. In 2016, 715 survivors of domestic violence like Natasha and 1,060 children like her sons found safety at our domestic violence shelters. None of this would be possible without the wonderful, charitable donations from caring individuals. It’s because of the giving nature of others that Natasha and her children are able to have a space they can feel protected in today so that they can thrive tomorrow.