Western Tidewater residents can help domestic violence survivors

Published 11:58 am Friday, October 9, 2015

By Brooke Briggs

On an average day, nearly 11,000 requests for emergency shelter, childcare and other services go unanswered due to a lack of funding at domestic violence nonprofits around the country. Even as demand for services increases, these programs continue to operate with limited resources.

Allstate Foundation Purple Purse is trying to change those numbers, and Virginia’s Samaritan House has been selected as one of more than 160 participating nonprofits across the country to be a part of the Purple Purse Challenge, which raises funds for nonprofits serving domestic violence victims. Samaritan House — Western Tidewater’s trusted domestic violence resource offering services to stop violence with education and training, and services to heal violence with counseling, support groups and more — was chosen for its commitment to providing financial empowerment services to domestic violence survivors.

Through the Purple Purse Challenge at PurplePurse.com, each participating organization can raise program funds. To encourage public donations, Allstate is investing $500,000 in Challenge sweepstakes and contests. Purple Purse charms are available to the first 200 donors who donate $50, and the designer purse will be raffled off for donors giving $100 or more.

One in four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime. In 98 percent of cases, victims will suffer from financial abuse, which means abusers will deny them access to money and financial resources. Without resources of their own, victims are often unable to care for themselves and their families, find employment and housing or save for the future.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Supporters can donate through Tuesday, Oct. 27.