The YWCA believes that stemming Domestic Violence is a community issue. We have provided crucial support to domestic violence survivors and their families since 1993, with funding from state, federal and municipal awards, private foundations and generous individual contributors.
Anyone in need of Domestic Violence or Sexual Assault services may call the YWCA during the day from 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at 978.682.3039. After hours, you may call our 24-hour hotline at 877.509.YWCA (9922).
As an alternative, you may call the statewide, 24-hour SafeLink Domestic Violence Sheltering Line at 877.785.2020, for referrals to shelter and domestic violence hotlines and programs in your region.
The YWCA offers a range of services to domestic violence survivors and their families, including:
- Emergency Services:Crisis intervention and advocacy, emergency safety planning, referrals to shelters, transportation and help obtaining food and other emergency needs.
- Legal Advocacy: The YWCA’s two full-time, bi-lingual (English-Spanish) Court Advocates are on site at the Lawrence District Court every day that court is in session and are on-call at the Lawrence Probate Court to provide assistance with obtaining temporary restraining or harassment orders. The Advocates also help victims understand their legal rights, options and responsibilities, arrange for translation services and make referrals to Merrimack Valley Legal Services.
- Transitional Housing and Supportive Services: The OASIS Project, housed at YWCA Fina House, provides 9 units of apartments for families have who experienced homelessness as the result of domestic violence. Services, which are provided by YWCA staff and experts in the community, include programs on becoming economically self-sufficient, vocational counseling, parenting skills instruction, anger management, individual case management and counseling support for women and their children. Families in the OASIS Project move to permanent housing within 2 years.
- The Single Residency Occupancy [SRO] program is an option for single women who become homeless as the result of domestic violence and includes 10 units of single-room occupancy apartments with shared kitchen, living room and baths. Women living in The Residence receive vocation counseling and case management and may live there permanently.
- Housing Advocacy: YWCA staff assist women with applications for Section 8 and other subsidized housing options, financial planning to achieve self-sufficiency and employment and education planning.The YWCA is also an active participant in the City of Lawrence’s Continuum of Care, comprised of nonprofits concerned with housing issues from throughout the region. The Continuum meets from 10 a.m. to noon on the first Thursday of every month at YWCA Fina House, 203 Haverhill Street. For more information, contact Susan Fink at the Lawrence Community Development Department.
- Youth Education on Healthy Relationships: According to the CDC, a nationwide survey found that 9.4% of youth are victims of relationship violence, which can include physical, sexual, or psychological/emotional violence, or stalking. The YWCA provides in-school workshops on healthy relationships to more than 1,400 teens each year to help teens make healthy and remain safe. Workshops are also available to parents, youth workers and community leaders.
- Immigrant Advocacy: Through federal RISE funding and private support, the YWCA provides specialized services to recent immigrants who are victims of abuse, linking them and their families to an array of domestic violence services to help them remain safe and become self-sufficient.