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Brenda was pregnant when she arrived at our emergency shelter (Hidden Valley House), and she had two young children with her. For most of her life, Brenda did not know what a healthy relationship was like because the control that her abusers had over her was “normal” to her.
While at Hidden Valley House, she had a support system that surrounded her with care and understanding. Through counseling, Brenda realized that it was not too late for new beginnings. Because her two children felt safe and comfortable at Hidden Valley House, we extended Brenda’s family stay at the shelter so that they all could have more stability. During this time, Brenda delivered a beautiful girl.
In the following months, we linked Brenda to community resources to help her reach her goal of independence. And this week, Brenda got the keys to her new apartment. She is extremely happy since she and her children will spend Christmas together for the first time as a “family” in their own place. And, gifts will be waiting underneath their tree, thanks to CCS’s Bridging Hearts Adopt-A-Family program.
Please make a contribution to help us continue the gift of safety and empowerment throughout the year. Thank you!
Carmen called our crisis hotline seeking help to get her and her son, Dylan, out of their home before her abusive husband returned from work. She feared for their lives. The physical violence got worse day by day. Carmen had no transportation and no money, so our shelter staff met them at the police station and we helped her file a police report, and brought them to our emergency shelter.
Carmen and Dylan were confused, hopeless and fearful. Our caring professionals at CCS helped them adjust, and within 48 hours Carmen obtained a temporary restraining order. Under the care of our counselors, Carmen and Dylan began their healing journey.
Carmen and Dylan eventually moved to our long term emergency shelter called Next Step North – where Carmen’s dreams became a reality. With her goal to become independent, she found free childcare for her son, she sought employment, and she got her own cell phone and a car. After many discussions with her CCS family advocate, Carmen decided to go to school to become a Certified Nursing Assistant. She was able to do this through financial aid and she obtained a computer for her schooling through an assistance program.
Carmen recently passed the California Certified Nurse Assistant exam and the first people she called were the CCS shelter team who helped her through her journey.
This is what Carmen said to her CCS family advocate:
“You have been so helpful to me in every way. You have been like a sister and true friend. You are whom I am today. And I move on every day very strong knowing that there is a special person who is more like a mother to a daughter behind me. Your thoughtful encouragements pamper me every time I feel I am down. I have completed my CNA classes and have gone to job interview today all because of the support you have given me and my son. I hope you continue with the same spirit to help other women like me who really lose hope due to what they go through. You help me to discover my importance. I get stronger, healthier and bloom like a flower planted into a healthy soil. You empower me and I certainly started realizing I am a human being just like other people. Thank you…and may God always give you strength to help other women just like you are doing to me.”.
Please join us in lifting women like Carmen with your gift of hope today.
• No-cost 30-day emergency shelter program for domestic violence (female and male) victims and their children
• Safety planning including all members of the family
• Provides Food & Clothing
• Linkage to CCS legal services
• Referral information to community support services
• On-site support groups for adults
• Children’s services include counseling, recreational activities, parent education, enrollment in school, and advocacy related to child safety
• Assistance with obtaining long-term safe housing, including transitional housing
• Transitional housing units available for up to 12 months, for victims of domestic violence and their children
• Ongoing professional advocacy and support services
• Linkages to all of CCS core programs
• Information and referrals to community and government services
• Reduced rent based on income
24-Hour Toll Free Hotline: 1-888-385-4657
Project Safehouse: 619-631-6442
Hidden Valley House: 760-480-0055