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Domestic violence has consequences for every aspect of community life, including the justice, education, and workplace arenas.
For over 30 years, the YWCA of Sonoma County has been the acknowledged community leader in providing domestic violence services for Sonoma County.
• The YWCA operates a 24-hour domestic violence/sexual assault hotline.
• The YWCA operates the only confidential emergency domestic violence shelter in Sonoma County at which women and children can live safely for up to eight weeks, receiving counseling, support services and family advocacy.
• After leaving the shelter, our clients are eligible to enter the two-year Adobe program, which supports their self-sufficiency by continuing to provide counseling, support services, and family advocacy. Housing is facilitated in partnership with other community agencies.
• YWCA Advocates are also co-located with law enforcement in the Sonoma County Sheriff's Department, as well as several city police departments. They provide crisis intervention, counseling, law enforcement advocacy, and legal services (including court accompaniment and restraining order assistance) for victims in cases involving law enforcement.
• The YWCA also operates "A Special Place" – a therapeutic childcare and preschool center for children most at risk.
Delivering these direct services to victims is critical, as is proactively working to confront community-level acceptance of domestic violence, raising awareness about family violence as a public health issue, and advocating for policy changes. In partnership with law enforcement, county agencies, and other non-profits, the YWCA has mobilized the collective power of the community to address this issue. The YWCA conducts outreach and educational programs for healthcare professionals, educators, law enforcement, and the community at large. In addition, education about abuse issues is taken into the public schools to students, teachers, and parents. This increased awareness and visibility leads to higher and more effective utilization by entire families of the health services and options the YWCA and others provide.