Each October YWCA Hanover Safe Home renews efforts to increase public awareness of domestic violence and its far reaching effects by participating in National Domestic Violence Awareness Month or DVAM. This year, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented unique challenges for Safe Home. Safe Home witnessed the devastating effects of COVID-19 as vulnerable adults and children were locked in with their abusers for extended periods, resulting in an increase in service needs across the spectrum of over 30 percent. The increased demand for services was compounded by more severe injuries in abuse cases, greater need for shelter for fleeing victims, fewer available staff, and limitations on available resources.
From March through August 2020, Safe Home advocates in Adams and York Counties helped nearly 1,000 clients with services ranging from Protection from Abuse Orders to therapy, housing assistance,to transport, and safety planning. Compared to last year, the number of Protection from Abuse petitions has nearly doubled. Safe Home offers a client-driven holistic approach to helping victims and their families and has an impressive array of services available.