I Am So Thankful for DomesticShelters.org
Have you ever heard of DomesticShelters.org? I truly hope so. If you follow me on Facebook, you probably have because I am one of their biggest fans.
DomesticShelters.org began two years ago, through a partnership of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV) and Theresa’s Fund. I first heard about Domesticshelters.org when I contacted NCADV to get a written listing all the DV crisis centers in the U.S. They told me they were no longer going to have a written book with all that information because as soon as it was published, it is outdated – the shelters in the US change that rapidly. They told me they were creating an on-line resource that would be always up-to-date. I was excited! What an incredible tool for the people I help with domestic violence issues.
I felt as if I waited forever for this tool to be available. Finally, DomesticShelters.org was created in 2014. They offer so much more than a way to find shelters in the U.S. They also have a wonderful weekly blog with helpful articles and they offer DV statistics by state and by topic. They even offer a way that other websites, (like mine), can offer this information to their readers. If you are looking for a crisis center near you, you can go to my Get Help page. If you are looking for articles or statistics, you can go to my Current DV Stats & Articles page.
Recently, I received an Impact report from DomesticShelters. If you are interested in the entire report, click here. I will summarize parts of it for you.
DomesticShelters.org began because they were aware that when people try to find a DV crisis center, they turned to the internet five times more often than hotline phone calls. While the Internet was full of information, a number of problems persisted:
- No central online service existed.
- Not all shelters/crisis centers have websites.
- Online searching can produce unhelpful listings.
- The right match is often buried in search results.
- There was insufficient information about shelters.
- Many sites were not mobile-friendly.
- Finding help is confusing.
- Decision making becomes overly difficult.
- Too slow when time is of the essence.
Today, DomesticShelters.org’s database lists 3,000+ shelters in the U.S. and Canada. The website contains 300+ articles, surveys and other resources for victims and professionals. An average of 150 people every hour visit the site to find help, shelter, information and a better way forward. It is the fastest growing among all major domestic violence websites, helping 1.2 million visitors each year and growing at a rate of about 200% annually.
Who visits DomesticShelters.org?
- 10% 18-24 years old
- 20% 25-34 years old
- 27% 35-44 years old
- 23% 45-54 years old
- 20% 55+ years old
- 49% Smartphone
- 44% Desktop
- 7% Tablets
In July 2016, they performed a survey of 250 survivors, professionals serving survivors and others interested in domestic violence. Among the significant findings is that respondents said DomesticShelters.org provides the most value to survivors of any key national domestic violence organization website. And that DomesticShelters.org is considered one of the most important new national resources developed in the last five years.
Of those surveyed:
- 97% had found the information on the website to be high quality
- 95% found the searchable database of 3,000 programs and shelters in the U.S. and Canada helpful
- 88% had read articles, checklists and other content
- 63% had signed up for their weekly email newsletter
- 58% had found a shelter, hotline or other DV organization
- 38% had participated in a survey
- 34% had researched statistics
- 34% had liked, commented or shared social media posts
- 32% had discovered recommended books to read, (including mine!)
If you haven’t yet, I hope you will check out DomesticShelters.org to see all they have to offer.
I am incredibly thankful to this organization for all they do to help DV victims and advocates.
Question: If you have been to DomesticShelters.org, what did YOU find most helpful?
In Matthew 25:40, Jesus tells us:
‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
Thank you DomesticShelters.org for all you do and will continue to do for our sisters and brothers who experience domestic violence.
Blessings to all of you,