Domestic Violence Awareness Month: Pandemic brings increased need for helpline and trauma services

Published: Oct. 27, 2021 at 8:28 AM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - The Peaceful Paths Holiday Giving Program shared holiday joy with more than 150 families in Alachua, Bradford and Union counties last year. This year their Neighborly November and Adopt a Family programs are back where participants can provide holiday meal kits or respond to wish lists with specific needs.

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Peaceful Paths Executive Director Theresa Beachy said the holidays can be a difficult for victims of domestic violence.

“You might be isolated from family, or maybe your in a situation where your family is changing and it’s not something you anticipated seeing so the holiday giving program allows people to support survivors and their children and give some holiday joy during the Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons,” Beachy said.

This program comes as the pandemic has brought an increased need for domestic violence helpline and trauma services.

“Increased isolated and lack of access just becomes another excuse for a batterer to increase power and control in a relationship so we’re really seeing an increased demand for our services especially helpline, trauma counciling, legal services, and we just want the community to know that we are here,” said Beachy.

The number for the 24/7 helpline is 352.377.8255. For more information on resources or how to get involved CLICK HERE.

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