Making change possible by understanding that domestic violence is not a private matter.
Since 1980, Home Free has been a safe haven for women and children needing to flee their homes due to domestic violence. The Shelter provides emergency housing and support services to over 500 women and children each year. Usually filled to capacity, the Shelter can accommodate 30 women and children with an average length of stay of 18 days. Services are provided free of charge to all residents.
Women's Advocates work with battered women as they identify needs, set goals, and access services. Advocates assist women in obtaining legal remedies, housing, financial resources, medical care, and transportation and accompaniment to appointments as needed. Home Free also offers a number of education and support groups as well as social and recreational opportunities.
I was supported, listened to, and received the resources I needed. Home Free was a big help to me! Home Free cared, helped, and supported me 24/7.
- In Their Own Words, Home FreeWinter 2013 newsletter
The Home Free children's program assists women with children to identify and meet each child's needs. The children's advocates work with children individually and in groups to help them develop age-appropriate knowledge and skills related to domestic violence. Childcare, groups, activities and one-on-one assistance is provided to Shelter children, including weekend groups and activities. Children's Advocates also assist mothers with placement of children in local schools.
Community and church support are vital to the work we do. We just want the community to know we are here, and anyone who needs help can call us. We so appreciate all the support Mount Olivet gives us—it is a great collaboration.
- Kari Hitchcock, Home Free Community Coordinator
How does Mount Olivet support Home Free?
- Collect cell phones - Home Free recycles them as a fundraiser.
- Provide Personal Care packages: providing these items to residents means Home Free doesn't need to purchase them. The money saved can be used for special needs, such as cultural food for immigrant women, food for those with allergies, helping pay for a child’s field trip or an apartment application fee.
- Provide food, have donated clothing and household supplies to setup new homes and help relocate.
- A portion of Mount Olivet’s annual tithe is allocated to support Home Free.
What else can we do?
- Re-do rooms (paint, etc.)
- Read to the children
- Provide birthday party supplies
- Raise awareness of this valuable community resource!