While many of us consider our home a refuge, not everyone’s home is a safe place. The isolation and distancing created by COVID can escalate the risks of domestic violence. Officials at Safe Berks, a United Way agency partner, believe domestic violence cases have been underreported in recent months, and as some things have eased up the agency is experiencing an increase in calls with a need for shelter.
With the support of United Way’s COVID-19 Response Fund, Safe Berks has been able to continue serving domestic violence and sexual assault survivors 24/7 and provide necessary PPE to staff and clients to maintain a healthy environment. The United Way grant also helped the agency provide food, transportation and essential items to clients throughout the pandemic.
In addition, the partnership between the two organizations supported more than 10 clients, including Lisa*, who are progressing from the shelter to either transitional housing or their own apartment. Lisa is now on the path to move into independent housing after recently completed a series of Safe Berks programs. She and her children are safe, and she secured stable employment and purchased a car.
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*Client’s name has been changed to protect the identity