Homeless for the Holidays
During the holidays, many of us take time out of our busy lives to visit with friends and family, enjoy home-cooked meals, exchange presents and give thanks for the little things we often take for granted.
But each winter, domestic violence victims and their children have to choose between enduring painful abuse with a roof over their heads or homelessness during the holidays. Although some survivors may choose not to leave their home during this time to keep the peace, or not disturb long-held family, religious or cultural traditions, many find themselves in hiding, spending the holidays in safe shelter.
The experience of being in shelter can be particularly challenging and isolating during the holidays - a time when many families are celebrating together and society at large appears festive, cheerful and in the spirit of giving. Children in shelter often experience strong emotions such as anxiety about being away from home, divided loyalties between the victimized and abusive parent, feeling left out of family traditions and more.
At A Woman's Place, we know that domestic violence does not stop during the holidays. We work hard to provide a warm and welcoming home away from home for diverse individuals and families in need every day of the year. When others are home, our dedicated staff are at the shelter answering crisis calls, providing support and making sure that no one has to be alone for the holidays.
Farewell from Our Executive Director
As I begin to write my final piece for A Woman’s Place, I find (for once) I am at a loss for words. Over the last four years, I have had the opportunity to meet so many fantastic people, from hardworking and heartfelt advocates, to clients, community partners and the public. It definitely takes a community to welcome a new Executive Director and I have been so thankful for those who took the time to welcome me, mentor me and provide support to A Woman's Place. I leave with many pieces of this work firmly ingrained into who I am.
Thank you for your consistent support as we work to help individuals and their children find a safer path in life and become self-sufficient without experiencing partner violence. Your passion and your support fuel our work and allow us to continue every day to help each person. I am constantly amazed at the thoughtfulness of our community. My favorite story is cautiously opening a box that felt too light for its size, only to find almost 30 hand-knitted caps from infant sizes to adult. There was no note, no return address; just a lot of love inside.
To our fellow agency partners, keep up the good work. Weld is an area strong with leaders and collaboration. I often found that we are the shining example for other counties to look up to! I know you will extend your warm welcome to the next person who will fill these shoes, as that’s just what you do because that is our community. Our excellent staff will continue to support those who need us, as we have since 1978. I will miss seeing their admirable work every day the most. With you by our side, we will continue to provide our services to those in need 24 hours/7 day per week/365 days per year. As I wrap up at the end of December (can that really happen?), I look forward to a new journey, but I look backward with so many memories and new friends that I will take with me.
"This has been the most helpful place in the world. They support you and give you advice on your situation. I love it here. They were my life savior. Very educated on resources. Blessed to have them. I just love Dolly (Legal Advocate). She is so kind, understanding and knows her job. Thank you everyone." - September nonresidential client
"Jessica (Intervention Advocate) was excellent at gently pushing me to meet my goals, was empathetic and understanding of my struggle, and made the extra effort to place my dog safely." - September residential client
"I would like to give a very special thanks to Ruby (Evening Advocate). She was very helpful, very nice...she gave me resources and actually listened and cared. I will miss our meetings, she is a wonderful person!!" - September residential client
"The best part about my stay at A Woman's Place was living in peace with the support from everyone." - October residential client
"Thank you angels for all your support and concerns-especially for my kid's well-being - he’s my baby and staff really understood and went to his rescue-which made me calm and feel safe." - October residential client
"Cooper (Swing/Legal Advocate) is an outstanding counselor and I feel she will do nothing but help me move forward in my life." - October residential client