From the Director

Why Do They Stay?

Why Do They Stay?

Dear Friends, Do you ever wonder why victims of domestic violence stay with their abusers? It’s a common question, and there are many answers. You’ll see some on social media with the #whyistayed hashtag. One of the most frequent answers that we hear seems especially appropriate to discuss during the month of May: they’re mothers, and they want to protect their children. Their perspective is that by staying, they either continue to provide a place where their kids can live, or they may keep the abuser focused on themselves so he doesn’t touch the kids. And why do victims leave? Once again, it’s often because they’re mothers. They want to protect their kids. They don’t want them to be witnesses to abuse. And they don’t want the kids to grow up believing that abuse is a normal part of a relationship (again, there’s a hashtag you’ll see, #whyileft). No matter why victims stay or leave, Sheltering Wings is here to support them. Whether that involves bringing them to the safety of our shelter or giving them access to resources that help them find safety on their own, we’re dedicated to helping mothers and all victims enjoy stable, independent lives. Your generous and prayerful support makes that all possible. Thank you for everything you do to help mothers, their children, and all the others who seek to remove abuse from their lives. Abiding in Him, Cassie Martin Executive... read more
Domestic Violence Doesn’t Stay at Home

Domestic Violence Doesn’t Stay at Home

Dear Friends,   Domestic violence doesn’t stay at home when its victims go to work. Think about that for a moment. Most think that abuse is something that happens only behind the closed doors of a home. But for victims who work, that isn’t the case. A national study found that three-quarters of abuse victims had been harassed at work by their husband or partner. More than half were late for work at least five times in the last month because of abuse and 28 percent had to leave early at least five days during the month. And 94 percent of corporate security directors say that domestic violence presents a high security problem for their companies. When victims leave home, the workplace is often the only place their abuser can find and attack them. We know that one in four women experiences abuse during her lifetime. Is your company addressing the victims who work for it? Is there a plan in place to protect workers and to support them if they seek help? Sheltering Wings can provide training for managers about the signs of abuse and what to do when they suspect an employee is a victim. We can also provide awareness training for employees. If your company isn’t already doing this, please have your HR director contact Melissa Echerd at 317-386-5061 or mecherd@shelteringwings.org to discuss what we can do. Thank you for your continued support of Sheltering Wings … and thank you in advance for helping us support people at your workplace! Abiding in Him, Cassie Martin Executive... read more
Worthy of Honor and Deserving of Respect

Worthy of Honor and Deserving of Respect

Dear Friends,   When most people think of Sheltering Wings, they think of our role as a safe haven for victims of domestic violence. And yes, that’s a major part of why we exist. But what’s just as important is our other roles. Let me spotlight two of those. The first is that we’re a community clearinghouse for all the services and resources that help women escape and recover from abuse. From education, to employment, to emotional resources like counseling and support groups, to parenting support, financial know-how, and help recovering from addiction, we’re a central resource for everything they need. We’ve helped thousands of families who never walked through our doors. The second is our focus on preparing women for their new lives, giving them the information and support they need to create safe and independent lives that are free from abuse. Through personalized case management, support groups, and many of the resources mentioned above, we help women find freedom and long-term stability for themselves and for their children. Our deepest hope is that each person will experience a transformation that will change who she is today and who she’ll be every tomorrow for the rest of her life. She’ll know that she is a person of value, worthy of honor, and deserving of respect. The support you provide does so much more than provide safe shelter for a woman. You’ve helped us make permanent changes in thousands of lives. Thank you for your continued support! Abiding in Him, Cassie Martin Executive... read more
A Big Step in Eliminating Domestic Violence

A Big Step in Eliminating Domestic Violence

Dear Friends, When February arrives, your thoughts may turn to love. After all, the month’s major holiday is Valentine’s Day. At Sheltering Wings, our thoughts turn to teenagers. That’s because February is also Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. If teens can begin their dating years knowing the difference between healthy and abusive relationships, they’re less likely to encounter problems in their adult years. Our staff frequently goes into schools and church youth groups to talk with teens about healthy dating relationships, and one of the most important conversations we have is about boundaries. It’s a great subject for parents to discuss, too. We emphasize the importance of communication in establishing healthy boundaries, urging teens to speak up when something bothers them instead of holding it in, to respect their partner’s wishes and feelings, and if disagreements arise, how to compromise in fair, constructive ways. We urge them to offer reassurance and encouragement, because healthy relationships are about building each other up. And we stress the importance of respecting each other’s privacy and personal space. Dating shouldn’t be a 24-hour activity. Boundaries aren’t signs of secrecy or distrust. In fact, they’re the very opposite. They express what makes us comfortable, provide guidelines for the relationship, and protect our individuality. Dating is new territory for teens, and it creates a lot of uncertainty. By taking the time to talk with the teens in your life about healthy relationships, you’re increasing the chances that they’ll have positive experiences and be able to protect themselves when something isn’t right. It may seem small, but it’s a big step in eliminating domestic violence from... read more

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Being Part of a Strong, Nurturing Family

Religion that is pure and good before God the Father is to help children…  I was talking with a toddler at a recent church bonfire. Every question I asked resulted in the same emphatic response: “I am Rachel and this is my mom.” When I asked about her friends, she replied, “I am Rachel and this is my mom.” When I complimented her boots, I heard, “I am Rachel and this is my mom.” I laughed all evening and smiled on the drive home, touched by her pride in her mother and family. Few things are as important as being part of a strong, nurturing family. That’s a blessing, but it certainly isn’t a given. The children who walk through our doors have grown up in homes where the dynamics are terrifying and where they witness power struggles that leave them fearful and confused. There are many days when my drive home from the shelter is filled with prayers to help youngster’s families become more loving, safe and life-giving. Fortunately, we can (and do) break the cycle of abuse. We teach parents what proper discipline and support look like. We help children create safety plans at home. We show teens healthy dating relationships so they can establish patterns for healthy adult relationships. With your support, we create new habits built on trust, respect and love. This newsletter focuses on serving those children. As you read the stories, I hope that you find inspiration and see the great opportunity to invest in creating healthier, happier futures for them. It’s never too late. Sheltering Wings Winter...

Becoming Enlightened

You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path. – PSALM 119:105 Did you ever wonder why we refer to gaining knowledge as becoming enlightened? Enlightenment is a beautiful word and a wonderful concept that’s expressed so well in Psalm 119. We say that we’re “in the dark” when we don’t know something, and darkness makes most children and many adults uneasy. But when we turn the lights on, ignorance and fear disappear along with the darkness. Like so many evils, domestic violence depends upon darkness to survive. When people don’t know about it, or when it stays hidden behind closed doors, or when our fear of the dark makes us turn away, domestic violence thrives. When we throw light on abuse by learning more about it and calling attention to it, it has less power over victims and others. Just as God leads us out of darkness with His lamp and light, enlightening people about abuse will help us overcome it. That’s why outreach and education are key elements of the work we do at Sheltering Wings. As people become more aware of the problem and we bring abuse out of the darkness and discuss it publicly, it becomes easier for victims to step forward and find the support they need. Instead of being isolated in the darkness, they can step into the light. If we are going to eliminate domestic violence, we must continue to talk about it, learn about it, and share our knowledge with others. Enlightenment is amazingly powerful. What will you do to be a...

Becoming a Survivor

You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. – 2 CORINTHIANS 9:11 If you ask most people about Sheltering Wings, they’ll tell you that we are a safe haven for women who are being abused. Providing emergency shelter and crisis interventions is an important part of our mission, but it’s not all we do. The other key elements of our mission are helping domestic violence survivors build stable, independent lives—and offering all of our services in a Christcentered environment. After all, providing shelter for families is a temporary solution. To achieve meaningful change, we have to work with each family to break the cycle of violence. We do that through our Life Skills program, a variety of services that focus on helping women and their children attain independence and stability. How important is that component of our mission? We know that the average domestic violence victim returns to her abuser seven times before leaving for good. Yes, it’s heartbreaking, but each woman who gains that sense of self-sufficiency is a woman who won’t give in to the empty promises of an abuser or the false hope that he’ll change. We want everyone who calls our crisis line or enters our doors to transition from being a victim to becoming a survivor. And, at Sheltering Wings, a critical part of that is introducing the women and children we serve to the ultimate source of hope and joy: God’s love and the future He has created for them. As a supporter of our work, you make it possible for us to share that hope and joy every day, and you help us give strength to those who need it most....

Don’t Let the Cycle Continue

Few things feel as frustrating and disheartening as the sense that we’re caught in a vicious cycle. We hope for progress, and then discover we’ve ended up right where we started.

Upcoming Events

Oct
26
Thu
11:00 am Dine Out Against Domestic Violence @ Various locations throughout Hendricks County
Dine Out Against Domestic Violence @ Various locations throughout Hendricks County
Oct 26 @ 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Dine Out Against Domestic Violence @ Various locations throughout Hendricks County
Join us and support our efforts to serve those suffering from abuse.  Visit Charbonos in Avon, Boulder Creek in Brownsburg and Stone Creek or Bru Burger in Plainfield 20% of your total bill will come[...]
Nov
2
Thu
6:30 pm Embracing Empowerment @ Sheltering Wings Community Room
Embracing Empowerment @ Sheltering Wings Community Room
Nov 2 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Embracing Empowerment @ Sheltering Wings Community Room | Danville | Indiana | United States
Embracing Empowerment meets every Thursday, 6:30-8:00pm, November 2, 9, 16, 23, 30. Embracing Empowerment is a support group which is open to residents and community members.  This support group will help victims and survivors gain[...]
Nov
14
Tue
6:30 pm Teens That Talk-Youth Council Me... @ Sheltering Wings
Teens That Talk-Youth Council Me... @ Sheltering Wings
Nov 14 @ 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm
Teens That Talk-Youth Council Meeting @ Sheltering Wings
Teens That Talk Youth Council is a group of students from various schools in Hendricks County, Avon, Plainfield, Brownsburg, Danville and Tri-West.  They range in ages from freshman to seniors.   Our mission is to raise[...]