October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and one organization in Siouxland is working around the clock to make sure survivors get the help that they need.
“Domestic violence is about power and control, said Robin McGinty. "And that can be done physically that can be done spiritually, financially, emotionally, all of those things. Domestic violence knows no bounds right it's men it's women it's all races it's all a financial classes and we see that here.”
Here in Sioux City, Safe Place Siouxland helps survivors of domestic violence with whatever they need. McGinty is the Executive Director of the organization.
“We're a victim service organization that exists to provide safety, advocacy and support primarily to victims of domestic violence and their children," she said of Safe Place Siouxland. "We also do some work with survivors of human trafficking and sexual assault as well.”
Safe Place Siouxland provides counseling, court services, crisis management and a 12-bed shelter for those who need a place to stay. All of this free of charge.
“People think about with domestic violence is maybe a black eye or bruise. But we know from all of our relationships, that it's the words it's the verbal abuse, the emotional abuse," McGinty said of the manifestations of domestic violence. "It's those other forms of abuse that really can almost do the most long term damage.”
According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, 35% of women and 29% of men in Iowa experience some form of domestic violence. But one group often overlooked are the children.
SEE: IOWA STASTICS ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
"Children can be the last victims in some of this and we're very aware of that here." McGinty said, stating they see more children than adults, because many adults are seeking shelter with their kids. "We have a dedicated children's advocate that works with the kids does groups with the kids just offers, you know fun activities to little clubs so they can have a positive memorable experience, especially while they're staying in shelter.”
Safe Place Siouxland offers around the clock assistance, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for anyone who needs it with staff trained to help in any way possible, getting survivors somewhere safe and helping them see that there is a way out.
“And what we want people to know is that, you know, you're worth it, you're worthy. There are other options for you. And we're here to help you every step of the way.”
RESOURCES: NATIONAL COALITION AGAINST DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
If you are in crisis, contact The National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or www.TheHotline.org.
To learn more about Safe Place, visit their Facebook Page and Website.
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