From our home to yours, we send wishes for love and peace to all of our friends and supporters during this special season of gratitude and giving. We hope that your holiday is abundant with meaning – a time of connecting with community, friends, family, spirit, and those who love us.
At the Abbie, we know that the need for our services does not wane with the holiday warmth. For the people we serve, the desire for safety bears the extra seasonal weight of yearning for normalcy when everyone else is focused on celebration and ritual. As the afternoons darken, we watch the people we serve fill out their “wish lists” for our Adopt-a-Family program for the holidays. They list jackets and boots, toys for the kids, or household necessities in nervous preparation for moving out on their own. (With lots of encouragement, people will also add a small gift or two for themselves.)
At the Abbie, we know that there is a different “wish list” buried deep in the hearts of the women we serve. Those are the wish lists that move and inspire us to continue our work. We know that all of the presents in the world cannot undo the hurt and damage that has been done by domestic violence to the families we help.
At the Abbie, this is what the holidays and gift-giving mean to us and the people we serve:
“Jackets and Boots” mean basic needs, so that the people we serve can continue to participate in their community. Instead of being a time of indulgence, the holidays may bring the basic resources needed just to sustain and survive.
“Toys” mean happy kids, who feel safe at home with all caregivers. Kids who feel the security – that all kids deserve – to play and be free in their own space. Kids who don’t have to carry fear or worry for the safety of one parent at the hands of the other.
“Household Necessities” mean independence, self-determination, and all of the extra burdens that come with running a household without a partner. Most people don’t plan to be supporting their family on their own (while recovering from trauma).
More than anything, survivors of domestic violence wish that their partner had fulfilled their end of the bargain, and not forced them to choose between living in danger and living alone.
And so this winter, when we ask for your gift to the Abbie Shelter and all of its programming, we ask you to help us ease that “aloneness.” We ask for the most meaningful gifts: community, friends, family, spirit, and love – as we work to restore hope in the lives of the people we serve. They need us, and we need you. From our home to yours, we THANK YOU for your support, and for all that you do to sustain hope in the lives of those you love.