Our advocates work one-on-one with the residents to help them achieve their personal goals such as furthering their education, finding employment and gaining financial independence. The advocates offer support and resources that the women need to help them move on from the violent life they left behind.
Our support groups offer the women and children a safe space to discuss the issues and emotions they are dealing with due to domestic violence. Some topics addressed are “red flags,” safety plans, women’s health issues, and parenting techniques. Support groups are held once a week and thanks to the help of our volunteers we are able to provide childcare for residents.
Our children’s program offers a number of services to the women and children of Lydia’s House. There is an after-school program for children 5 years and older, 4 days a week, in which the children can receive tutoring and one-on-one help with homework. Lydia’s House has a summer program for our children, in which the advocates take the children on different outings including swimming, the zoo, and go-cart racing. Our children’s advocates also work with the mothers on parenting skills and school issues.
The chaplain at Lydia’s House is available to offer spiritual support to the women and children. This may take place through individual conversations with the residents or through the spiritual support circles offered for women and teens. Spiritual support focuses on healing and nurture of the human spirit, making sense of life experience, and how we connect with our own selves and other humans. Spiritual support may or may not directly connect with organized religion depending on the individual views of each woman and child.
Community and Family Activities
Lydia’s House encourages the women and children to gather together as a community to offer support to one another. Every week the staff and residents come together for a community meal, which is donated by various churches and other organizations. We also have community outings once a month which have included picnics, hayrides and trips to the movies.
Lydia’s House Advocates meet with residents to help complete short and long term housing goals. The Advocates work with the residents regarding the condition of the apartments and to maintain a safe, clean living environment. The advocate refers residents to the resources needed to find permanent, safe, and affordable housing.
Immigrant Support Services
Lydia’s House, at times, has a high population of immigrant and refugee women. These women often have additional needs that require extra support from our staff. These needs include getting immigration status, acquiring an education, learning English, adjusting to a new culture and building a life in a new country.
Lydia’s House encourages residents to take advantage of this transition time to work on counseling goals if they feel the need for such help. Lydia’s House Advocates provide referrals to agencies with services designed for children or adult survivors of domestic violence and/or sexual assault.