Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Women Helping Women

Domestic violence is the leading cause of homelessness among families in Saratoga County. Often a woman remains in or returns to an abusive home because of simple economics—she cannot provide food, shelter and health care for herself and her children on just her income... so she remains in an abusive home.  A 2009 study by the Allstate Foundation concluded that there is “a greater chance that the amount of violence in households will increase during times of financial crisis… women need to be aware of economic abuse -- when the abuser uses someone's lack of financial independence to keep them trapped in an abusive relationship.” It's a big problem, so big that it's hard to know where to start to fix it.

But one local organization, Soroptimist  International of Saratoga County hasn't let that stop them. For 9 years they've worked with DVRC to offer a financial literacy program for women, Project Hope and Power. Want to know more? Just listen as Soroptimist Ieaders, Nancy Trimbur and Joan Gerhardt,  speak with Look TV's David Storey about Project Hope and Power. Can a life change in 8 weeks?  Well here's the feedback from two recent participants
“I enjoyed the class wholly and gained confidence to make it on my own.  I learned how to better prepare myself for life without an abuser present, how to find a job, and present myself better to potential employers.  The class was a wealth of useful information I will use in my life forever.“ 
“Because  of Hope and Power  I can hold my head up.  Not be afraid anymore.”
So how can you help domestic violence victims become more financially stable?
  • Consider joining Soroptimist of Saratoga County... they're making a difference locally and internationally.
  • Donate gas cards for DVRC to provide to clients. Even $10 makes a difference for a domestic violence survivor; it can fill the gas tank so she can get to work each day until receiving that first paycheck.
  • Display information in your workplace to increase awareness of domestic violence. DVRC will provide a free employer toolkit to you... just call us at 518-583-0280.

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