Abuse doesn’t have to be physical to be life-damaging. Whether local residents need a safe spot away from aggressors, someone to help create a plan towards financial independence, or the community of a support group, Holland’s Resilience: Advocates for Ending Violence is open Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. A 24-hour phone line is available for help in both English (1-800-848-5991) and Spanish (1-866-728-2131). Another option for support is through email (firstname.lastname@example.org) with all services being free and confidential.
Resilience, previously known as the Center for Women in Transition, is a nonprofit serving victims of abuse based in Holland’s north side at 411 Butternut Dr, Holland, MI 49424. The organization has existed since 1977 serving Ottawa and Allegan counties. Throughout the name change, the organization’s mission has stayed the same, ”… to respond to, reduce, and prevent domestic and sexual violence.” In an interview, Resilience’s Communications & Development Manager, Danielle Evans, discussed the services offered and how volunteers and community members may provide support.
Q: WHAT NEEDS DOES RESILIENCE ADDRESS?
Danielle Evans: Resilience provides free and confidential services for local victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking. Resilience aims to end domestic and sexual violence for good by implementing violence prevention programming that aim to teach youth healthy relationships and consent skills.
Q: HOW DOES RESILIENCE RESPOND?
A: Services include 24/7 emergency safe shelter for families fleeing abusive homes, on-site sexual assault exams with nurses trained in forensic evidence collections, therapy for adults and children, support groups and educational workshops, case management and legal advocacy.
Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners, or SANE, are available at all hours on-call. To report an assault through Resilience, victims must be 13 years or older. Survivors over the age of 16 are able to report to law enforcement. Victims who are younger are advised to report to the Children’s Advocacy Center.
Other programs offered include ‘Coaching Boys Into Men’ and ‘Athletes As Leaders’ for healthy youth development. A newer program, ‘Champions of Healthy Manhood’ is described as a “safe space for men to bond and connect during their journey of exploring modern-day masculinity and allyship.” (resiliencemi.org)
Besides providing services directly to the victims of abuse, Resilience also holds fee-based workshops for service providers, social workers, and healthcare professionals. These workshops have been approved for continuing education credits by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW).
THE NEED FOR COMMUNITY SUPPORT
Q: HOW CAN PEOPLE SUPPORT RESILIENCE’S EFFORTS?
A: As we face deterioration in funding at the federal level, the most important thing one can do to support Resilience is to donate. Resilience relies on community support to continue providing life changing services for thousands of local survivors free of charge. In addition to donating, volunteers help Resilience reach further and maintain our programming.
Casual and work attire are provided through the wardrobe assistance program. The pantry program, Wendy’s Attic, is entirely dependent on community donations. Everyone needs the items the Attic tries to stay stocked with such as food and household essentials including toiletries. Not everyone gets out of the abusive situation they are in — Resilience is here to assist.
Q: FOR A VOLUNTEER, WHAT MIGHT A DAY LOOK LIKE?
A: Resilience has volunteer options of many varieties – folks can work directly with survivors by assisting on the Help Line or at the shelter, or stay behind the scenes helping with things like building maintenance and donation organization.
“No matter who you are: female, male, LGBTQI, religious or not, abuse is real.” — Resilience: Advocates for Ending Violence Agency Video.
Resilience: Advocates for Ending Violence 411 Butternut Dr Holland, MI 49424 24-Hour Phone Help Line: English (1-800-848-5991) and Spanish (1-866-728-2131) resiliencemi.org
Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners, or SANE, are available at all hours, on-call. To report an assault through Resilience, victims must be 13 years or older. Survivors over the age of 16 are able to report to law enforcement. Victims who are younger are advised to report to the Children’s Advocacy Center.