Listening is Key

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It can be difficult for someone to understand why a victim would stay in a relationship that has become abusive. Domestic violence victims often feel shame and blame when the relationship becomes abusive because in reality, domestic violence is not a single episode and rarely does the abuse begin with physical violence. Abuse is much subtler and slower to escalate, usually beginning with verbal attacks, isolation and controlling behaviors.

It is ...

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What Were you Wearing?

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The next time you are tempted to ask what someone was wearing when they were raped, instead ask whether or not consent was given.

To assist in the visualization of this message, Hands of Hope has partnered with 11 different organizations for this critical campaign.

Nationally, April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and locally, Hands of Hope wants people to realize the importance of consent in relationships.

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Airtag Stalking

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I want to inform you of a rising issue: Airtag stalking.

The Apple Airtag is a coin sized device that can help locate personal items that rolled out last year. While these devices were created with the intention of finding lost items, they are now frequently being used by stalkers to track the location of people.

The Airtags seem to be most often hidden in cars to track a person’s location. If an Airtag has been separated from its owner ...

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Creating a Community of Safety

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Last week I was in the chiropractor’s office hoping for some headache relief after a quick crack of the neck.  As I waited my turn in the waiting area, a young woman signed in and sat down.  The woman who entered the facility immediately after her signed in and came to sit across from her in a chair.  She asked the first woman, “Does he get mad like that a lot?  He was really mean towards ...

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When You Know Better, You Do Better

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A signature statement throughout all of Family Service Society is “when you know better, you do better.”  This is how we challenge ourselves to always be learning and improving.  Our continuous improvement path leads us to seek the best possible solutions for clients including those from Hands of Hope who are domestic violence, stalking and sexual assault victims and survivors.  Five years ago we set out to learn more about how to better serve this population as we could see ...

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Growing Independent

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A wise man recently told me that I should be 95 percent happy and 5 percent sad that our oldest daughter has relocated to Austin, Texas for her first professional job.

I am extremely proud of her and all her accomplishments and know that she will do well in her architecture career.

I told this wise man that whenever I feel a little sad I think about how I did the same thing after graduating from college in Nebraska, taking my first ...

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What Were You Wearing?

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We need to stop asking a victim of sexual assault, “What Were You Wearing?” and instead ask “How can I help you recover?”

This month members of the Grant County Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) have strategically placed outfits and messaging from actual survivors at various locations across Grant and Wabash counties. The SART includes representatives from Marion Police Department, Marion General Hospital, Grant County Sheriff’s Department, Hands of Hope/Family Service Society, Inc. and Grant County Prosecutor’s Office

April is sexual assault ...

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Being Thankful

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As we gather around the dinner table this Thanksgiving let us truly be thankful for all the blessings we have been given.

I realize the dinner table may look different this year as the pandemic has caused many to reduce the number of place settings at their annual dinner. So, let us not focus on who we cannot be with in person, however, instead, how we can still creatively connect with those loved ones. And as we connect with our loved ...

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Hope Starts With Me

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Hope Starts With Me. That is the campaign theme for Hands of Hope this October as we focus on breaking the cycle of domestic violence. It is so incredibly important in this time of uncertainty and often time’s chaos, that we provide a sense of hope.

When we provide hope for someone living in a world of violence, we can begin to show them there is another way. There is the ability to not be physically, sexually, emotionally, verbally, financially or ...

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Embracing Hope

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HOPE – a very powerful four-letter word that I try my best to daily embrace.

And a word I would encourage each of you to also find a way to incorporate in each of your daily lives. I personally find hope most often in my conversations with God – not formal prayers always, sometimes just a quick comment when I am feeling down or stressed.

In every one of 2,000 published studies on the science of hope, Casey Gwinn, Alliance for Hope ...

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