In our Central region, we provide domestic violence services.
Advocates stationed in seven district courts and one probate court assist individuals with obtaining restraining and harassment orders. These advocates are located in Attleboro, Dudley, East Brookfield, Milford, Taunton (District and Probate), Westborough and Uxbridge. This program is partially supported by the Massachusetts Office for Victim Assistance (MOVA) through the 1984 VOCA grant from OVC, OJP, US D.O.J.
Located at the MJ Leadenham Center in our Worcester office, supervised visitation is provided to non-custodial parents due to a prior history of domestic or sexual violence. Staff model healthy parenting skills with these adults while they visit their children in a safe, monitored and nurturing setting.
Our housing stabilization program provides individuals with funding for rent, utilities, or other costs necessary for providing stable, reliable housing which was jeopardized as a result of domestic or sexual violence.
Civilian Police Advocate
Our civilian advocate in the Attleboro and North Attleboro Police Stations provides individuals with services such as crisis intervention, safety planning, and assistance with the criminal justice system.
OUR MISSION: REACH is committed to advancing the safety, healing, and empowerment of those who experience domestic or relationship violence, through direct services and education while promoting social justice for individuals and families of all backgrounds.
REFUGE: We provide shelter and safe home to survivors and their children who have been traumatized by domestic violence. Comprehensive support services are available to shelter guests, including counseling assistance in obtaining longer-term housing and employment, and legal advocacy.
EDUCATION: Through community-based education and prevention efforts, we foster healthy relationships and increased awareness of abuse in the community, in order to put a stop to violence before it occurs.
ADVOCACY: Our residential and community advocates use a survivor-centered, relational model of advocacy, helping survivors plan their safety, access benefits, and explore options for housing and employment.
CHANGE: Our overall goal is to end domestic violence through community education and early intervention, so that individuals and families of all backgrounds are empowered to lead healthier, safer lives.
Information & Support
Information and support regarding all aspects of domestic & sexual violence or stalking are available for victims, survivors and non- offending family members and friends. We can help you explore your options, plan for your safety, and learn how to support a loved one being abused. All of the services provided by Voices Against Violence are free of charge.
24 Hour Hotline (536-1659 or 1-877-221-6176)
Speak with an advocate 24-hours a day. Whether you’re fleeing a violent situation, or just have a question, someone is always available to talk.
Sexual Assault Support
Information and support about sexual assault, accompaniment to the hospital for exam and support throughout the process.
Receive information and assistance when obtaining protective orders, stalking petitions and support during court proceedings, such as custody hearings or criminal trials. Advocates can administer an intake process that may qualify survivors for free legal representation at permanent restraining order hearings.
Advocacy when making a report or participating in an interview with law enforcement, and assistance in understanding the criminal justice system.
Advocacy when working with any systems, such as prosecutors, attorneys, schools, mental health, medical, juvenile probation and parole officers, social service agencies child care providers, etc.
Safe, temporary shelter at a non-disclosed location is available for victims and their children in fear for their safety. Our safe house is a comfortable home in a residential environment. Trained advocates offer support, information, and referrals to women and children staying in our home, to assist them in rebuilding their lives.
Education & Outreach
Presentations consist of, but are not limited to, awareness raising around domestic violence, sexual violence, and stalking, media awareness, healthy relationships, sexual harassment, bullying, dating violence, and conflict resolution. All presentations are age appropriate and are provided at no cost to schools, community groups, social service agencies, hospital personnel, law enforcement, and others interested in learning about these issues.
Assistance for families who are involved with the Division of Children, Youth & Families and have experienced domestic or sexual violence. Our specially trained Domestic Violence Specialist works to advocate for victims and survivors throughout their DCYF experience.
Pattern Changing and Women’s Spirit are support groups for women promoting safe & healthy relationships. Children’s and/or Teen Support Groups are designed to provide a safe and nurturing environment for children who have witnessed domestic violence. Men’s support groups are available on an as-needed basis.
The YWCA Central Massachusetts has developed a comprehensive domestic violence program that encompasses a service delivery system that can respond to survivors of domestic violence effectively and efficiently. The design of each component is intended to address specific areas in the continuum of domestic violence services – ranging from emergency shelter for survivors and children fleeing from imminent danger to non-residential community based services, advocacy and support. It strives to address all forms of intimate partner violence simultaneously. Battered Women’s Resources (BWR) and Daybreak are programs of the YWCA Central Massachusetts.
The 24-hour hotline service provides emotional support, domestic violence advocacy, referrals to community resources, safety planning and crisis intervention. The hotline is answered by trained advocates who offer thoughtful attention. The hotline accepts collect calls.
Daily Chatline 4 p.m.-12 a.m.
The daily chatline service provides emotional support, domestic violence advocacy, referrals to community resources, safety planning and crisis intervention. The chatline is answered by trained advocates who offer thoughtful attention. The chat line address is www.ywcahelp.com
Local outreach is conducted at various community sites and provides access to support, advocacy, referrals, safety planning and crisis intervention.
Developing Alternatives For Women Now (DAWN)
DAWN is a intervention group targeted at women adjudicated for prostitution-related offenses. The program engages prostituted women in an eight-session cycle and provides alternatives so that women may choose to exit prostitution. DAWN is a collaborative of the YWCA, Worcester District Court Probation Department, the City of Worcester and numerous community stakeholders.
Domestic Violence Class
Clients who have been identified as domestic violence victims by the Department of Children and Families are referred to a domestic violence class held at the DCF Worcester office. The class is held once a week for 4 weeks. For the Battered Women’s Resources program they are referred to participate in classes based out of the Leominster office.
The domestic violence shelters provide refuge for victims at safe, confidential sites. These are the only confidential shelters in Central Massachusetts. Domestic Violence Services Advocates provide support, advocacy, counseling, and individual case management. The goal while at shelter is to empower the lives of survivors and their families, and to assist them in rebuilding for the future.
Family & Friends Bystander Program
Families and friends of victims, or suspected victims, may meet with a Domestic Violence Advocate for support, resources and information about domestic violence, as well as to discuss possible interventions.
SAFEPLAN advocates are not attorneys and do not provide legal advice, but are available at the court to assist victims of domestic violence through the restraining order process. SAFEPLAN advocates provide emotional support, explain the legal process of restraining orders and paperwork, courtroom procedure and discuss safety planning as well as referrals to ongoing support services. To speak to a SAFEPLAN Advocate, call the 24-hour hotline or the SAFEPLAN office in a court.
Short-term Counseling and Advocacy
This service provides goal oriented short-term counseling to victims and survivors of domestic violence; allowing individuals to explore their options privately with support of a counselor. This service uses an empowerment based model where the counseling process empowers victims to evaluate their situations and plan for their safety and future.
Substance Abuse/Domestic Violence Advocates coordinate services within community substance abuse treatment sites, serving women at various levels of treatment. Domestic violence intervention, education and prevention services are linked to each site, as well as direct services including short term counseling and facilitation of psycho-educational groups.
The domestic violence support groups are a time for people who have experienced domestic violence to come together, share experiences, and offer support to one another. They provide a comfortable atmosphere to develop trusting and caring relationships, and a safe place to talk about the abuse. All discussion is kept confidential. Referrals may be made by calling the outreach line, or may come in from other service areas. Survivors meet with an advocate and discuss the most compatible option available to them prior to joining the support group.
Service Provider Consultations
Domestic Violence Advocates are available to Service Providers for domestic violence consultations and resource information.
Services for Survivors of Domestic and Sexual Violence