Grantee Spotlight: ALIVE

 

 
 

Since 1983, ALIVE has restored safety and peace to families impacted by domestic violence (DV). ALIVE’s two female co-founders offered emergency shelter in safe homes to women and their children fleeing DV. ALIVE is now a full service agency supported by over 30 professionals and 100 volunteers from offices in St. Louis and Franklin Counties. Its mission is to provide counseling, emergency sanctuary, and other critical services to adults and children impacted by domestic abuse, as well as to increase awareness in order to create a supportive community. ALIVE offers:

• 24-Hour Crisis Line help for safety planning, program access, and referrals.
• Nights of Safety (NOS) Emergency Shelter, short-term sanctuary for DV survivors and their children when other options are unavailable. Partnering with confidentially located motels, NOS capacity is limited only by funding.
• Emergency Transportation to safe shelter (local or relocation) and other destinations providing services critical to safety, health, and healing.
• Adult Counseling (Individual and Support Groups) facilitated by specialized therapists to support healing from trauma and promote safe, healthy living.
• Children’s Treatment Program, helping child witnesses to DV recover and build healthy relationships/behaviors, also offering parenting skills support.
• Court Advocacy supports DV survivors file ex parte paperwork in obtaining Orders of Protection and with other DV-related court processes/hearings.
• Education and Training, conducted by trained DV advocates, is offered to community/professional groups to about DV and how to help.

ALIVE evaluates programs, identifies emerging issues/best practices, and adds proven programs like the Lethality Assessment Program (LAP), a homicide prevention protocol. Since February 2018, ALIVE partners with St. Louis City and County Police, who use an evidence based tool, the Lethality Screen, at each DV call to identify victims at most risk of DV fatality. The only such area program, the LAP immediately connects victims to ALIVE for shelter/support. Transportation is often a barrier to DV victims’ access to safety and support. Funding from the Joseph H. and Florence A. Roblee Foundation is key to the LAP’s success, making a difference to victims like Sue, Sam, an Kim:

Sue left her Chicago home to flee her abusive partner, who found her in St. Louis. Police were called to the resulting altercation. The Lethality Screen outcome led the officer to immediately connect Sue with ALIVE, and she entered NOS shelter. Sue disclosed her goal to relocate to Ohio, near family support and further from her abuser. ALIVE provided bus transportation and support to safely relocate Sue and her children to Ohio.

ALIVE provided Sam with transportation to St. Louis County Court to file for an Order of Protection. Sam had never contacted ALIVE until the officer responding to the DV call called on his behalf. Sam’s abusive partner was in police custody at the time, but due to the often-brief detainment of offenders, Sam feared for his safety. ALIVE provided a cab for Sam to safely reach the courthouse to request an Order of Protection.

Lack of transportation can prohibit a trip to seek medical help. During a call with LAP client Kim, ALIVE’s advocate learned Kim’s partner tried to strangle her. Strangulation can cause delayed damage or death, and Kim cited many symptoms of concern. Kim learned the severity of her abuse, and ALIVE provided a cab to the hospital for an exam.

These are a few cases in which ALIVE has transported LAP clients. ALIVE can help dismantle the transportation barrier that many victims face, empowering families to build safe, healthy, hopeful futures.

 
 
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