PATTY'S STORY - A LAURA'S HOUSE GRADUATE
Patty worried that her ex-boyfriend's harassment would affect her employment. She could not afford to lose another job.
Patty called the 24 hour hot-line to learn more about her options. Her ex-boyfriend's physical abuse had escalated. Her boss called security to remove him when he showed up at her office the day before. Patty worried that her ex-boyfriend's harassment would affect her employment. She could not afford to lose another job. She and her children had just moved back to her mother's home after being evicted from their apartment, due to domestic violence. Patty packed her belongings, collected her daughters from school and drove straight to Safety Net.
Early the next morning the Shelter staff brought her family some breakfast. Later two case managers interviewed her in the hotel lobby, and the the three agreed that Patty would enter Laura's House. During the first 72 hours Patty and her children did not leave the facility. Within that time, she met her case manager, divided chores with her housemates and began attending group sessions each morning. She met weekly with her case manager and therapist during her stay. Her younger daughter participated in "Building Blocks" therapeutic preschool each morning while she attended group. her fifth grade daughter travled to the local public school and returned to the Shelter in time for "Kid's Club" to complete her homework. Each of her children met with a Marriage and Family therapist counselor in addition to her participation in structured therapeutic group activities. She also attended several "Life Skills" training workshops where topics included, reducing stress, healthy meal preparation, fundamentals of banking and résumé building.
After 45 days, Patty learned that her request to transfer her job location had been approved by her employer. As she had been a successful participant in the Emergency Shelter's programs, Patty was eligible for Step Ahead. The extra month in the transitional housing program allowed her to conserve her savings. She searched for an apartment near her new job and the children's schools. After 30 days, Patty left Laura's House as a successful graduate of both programs! Rebuilding lives is an important and often difficult task.
It takes dedicated and experienced staff, outstanding support programs and time. Without intervention and education programs, victims of domestic violence find it extremely difficult to break the cycle of coercion and abuse that have become the norm in their lives.
Through the comprehensive domestic violence programs and services at Laura’s House, victims of domestic violence receive the time and the tools necessary to live healthy, independent, and violence-free lives.
By reducing risk factors and providing the information, education, life skills and support Laura’s House is able to break the cycle of domestic violence and empower victims to move beyond the abuse and live fulfilling lives.