It takes an immense amount of courage to make the decision to leave an abusive situation during any day of the year – but consider the obstacles that the pandemic has brought and a difficult situation is only exacerbated.For all of our courageous Moms -those in the Safe House and those hundreds of others in Monmouth County who are receiving our supportive services, please consider a donation to 180 this Mother’s Day weekend. You can donate online at: https://180nj.org/give-help/mothers-day-donations/ or you can donate through your mobile device by texting 180MOMS to 41-444. Your generosity enables us to change lives and allows us to keep our life-saving programs mobilized throughout the pandemic.
When I told Ryan and Megan that this holiday would be different, little did I know how resilient my little ones would be. I had such conflicting emotions about spending the holidays at 180’s Safe House. Ryan’s letter to Santa made me cry, yet I keep telling myself that leaving my abuser and the violence in our lives, was the best gift I could ever give to my children. In my heart I know that never again will I have to worry about our safety, hide in fear or cover my bruises; we will live in peace as every family should. The caring staff at the Safe House is helping me to start anew. With a restraining order now in place, we will stay at the Safe House through the holidays and into the first month of the new year. The kids and I have begun art therapy with 180 counselors and I have started to focus on seeking a new job and finding a permanent place to live. Together, we will figure out a new and wonderful way of life – free from abuse and full of hope. Safety, peace, courage and hope….these are our gifts this holiday season.
Dear Friends of 180,
Please considering supporting 180 this holiday season by donating through the link above. If you would like to discuss your gift, or provide a credit card over the phone, please contact Lynn Lucarelli, Director of Development at 732-264-4360 ext. 4230 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
“There was a darkness in our home, but mom and 180 changed all of that for me. As I got older I learned that mom had spoken to 180 Court Liaisons at the Monmouth County Courthouse and she was able to obtain a restraining order.”
“I am now a living example that this program works and it is possible to come through a desperate situation. Now I am independently caring for my children, managing my comfortable home, working full time and continuing my education at a local University.”
“You allowed me to touch my pain and come to terms through art with the sadness I was resolved to keep buried. You have helped in the process of healing from many painful wounds. Amanda’s Easel became a refuge, a place to seek comfort and helped me to understand new ways of thinking. We are a better family because of YOU.”
“Just knowing that 180 was by my side in the courtroom gave me the strength to be there and the courage to face the defendant.”
“I think that the most important thing 180 does for its clients is to empower them. Educating sexual assault victims about their choices is handing them the tools they will need to become survivors.”
These brave women shared their stories with us. If their story sounds a bit like yours, please reach out to us today. 180 can help you like we helped them. We understand that the holidays can be an especially vulnerable time for families and 180 Turning Lives Around is here for you. 1.888.843.9262
My mother and I stayed in the Safe House when I was 10. That was over twelve years ago but I remember it like it was yesterday. She gathered up the courage to leave and we escaped our abuse once and for all. With a few belongings stuffed into suitcases and a large black trash bag of clothes, we fled. I was too young then to know all of the horrors of Mom’s life; as she did a good job protecting me from most, but not all of the violence. There were nights when I thought the screaming would never end and other nights when the silence was just too still. Fighting…arguments…hiding…her bandages. There was a darkness in our home, but mom and 180 changed all of that for me.
As I got older I learned that mom had spoken to 180 Court Advocates down at the Monmouth County Courthouse and she was able to obtain a restraining order. Meanwhile, 180’s emergency shelter kept us safe until mom found a better job and a place for us to live. As a child, I tackled the changes and challenges in our life by talking to 180 counselors. Also, mom and I took part in weekly creative arts therapy sessions for almost a year with the nicest and most caring staff. Little did I know then that this was 180’s Amanda’s Easel Creative Arts Therapy Program. The therapy helped me to cope with the changes in my family and the violence I had witnessed in our former home.
180 saved me. I’m not sure where mom and I would be now if it were not for 180. We never lost hope and 180 gave us the tools we needed to start anew. We continue to be optimistic about our future. Although 180 is part of our past, we will never forget…we carry them with us wherever we go.
*names are changed to protect our survivors.