This is one of my humanitarian project ideas. I have been on the search for an authentic humanitarian organization for assistance in turning my idea into a reality. I wish to share my vision with my readers. It is time.
A Sanctuary For Women and Children of Unsafe Living Situations
To begin with, let me tell you a bit about who I am and how I arrived at my business model. My name is Vicki, although I prefer to go by Victoria. I am the mother of a 6 year old and the wife of a man with chronic health issues. Like my friend Susie, I understand the situation of being bound by financial dependence. I am a very creative, bright woman who holds deep convictions about Love and Right Action. I have many ideas for a New Earth and this is just one of them I am presenting here.
I met my friend Susan, who I always called Susie, through an internet message board for women who deal with panic and agoraphobia. We continued an e-mail/regular mail and phone relationship for almost 20 years. We shared almost everything two women can share with one another. Living on different coasts, we never did meet in person, but that did not put a damper on the emotional bond we created.
Susie died last August just a few weeks of being diagnosed with cancer. She came from a violent background of abuse, starting in childhood and continuing through her first marriage (which ended in divorce) and ending in her last relationship, which was the most violent. Her last partner was physically, mentally and emotionally abusive, with the physical element growing in frequency towards the last few years of their relationship. She suffered from panic and agoraphobia, so working and supporting herself was a great challenge. I tried what I could to help her, giving her ideas for treatment, making money and the like. I offered up my home for her to stay in. She had already phoned the local police and they failed to take the situation seriously. Neighbors knew but did nothing. Apparently that’s how they do it in certain areas of the country.
I told her to call a shelter, which was met with resistance. “I am too sick to work. You know that!” she would insist. It was those words that started me thinking about how the system handles victims of domestic violence.
Throughout those years, I became more determined and incensed that there was not more help for women in these situations. A growing conviction of “DO SOMETHING” consumed me at times. My idea for a Women’s Sanctuary began to take root several years ago. However, it was her death that really woke up my inner “DO SOMETHING” warrior(ess).
While her death hit me very hard, devastated me actually, it was not really that much of a surprise she got cancer. After years of abuse, her beautiful heart/mind/body/soul could only take so much. She went quickly, within weeks. I have since felt her around me and feel she is at peace and really in her own deep way, wanted to leave this Earth. Not an easy thing for her friend left behind to process – especially since I am the type to think “if only I could have really DONE something for her!”
So her death got me to thinking about the kind of help the System offers women seeking to escape violent living situations. In a nutshell, it is grossly lacking. It stinks. It sucks. You are expected to get back on your feet quickly, get a job, be self-supporting. Be like the masses. The normal folks. What so many fail to realize is that when you have been abused, you are exhausted. You feel broken. You are deeply traumatized. You have issues of trust and self-worth.
What these women need is a place to heal. A place where they can go and receive the unconditional help they so need. Without judgment. Without control. Without expectations.
My Business Model would consist of the following:
A place to stay for the woman and her children (if any) for as long as is needed.
A place where the woman is given the chance to truly heal by providing a variety of healing modalities, including but not limited to:
2) Massage and other body work
3) Energy work
4) Trauma release therapy
5) Personal empowerment training
6) Personal coaching (to determine what she wants to do next with her life – then provide her the tools and resources to help her create her vision.)
7) Support group(s)
8) Healthy meals
9) Peaceful grounds – surrounded by nature
10) Private apartments
11) Exercise classes – yoga, martial arts, weight room
As you can see, a variety of services to help the woman heal – TRULY heal – mind, body and soul.
I believe every city, big and small, can benefit from such a model.
We owe it to the Susie’s of the world and their children to provide them with nothing less.
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