Sue thought that she had the family of her dreams. A young mother of an active toddler, she was learning how to balance motherhood and a good relationship with the father of her child. The fairytale dwindled as monthly bills, among other factors, became the center of stress for the couple. Day after day, disputes worsened. Arguments never seemed to see the light of day, ultimately leaving Sue broken both emotionally and physically.
RISE-NY, formerly known as the SOS Shelter, is a nonprofit agency based in Broome County that offers various confidential services to victims of domestic violence. Since 1979, the organization has acted as a safe haven for survivors of all identities and their children.
Ongoing reports with Social Services resulted in temporarily removing Sue’s child from her supervision. Through constant internal battles with herself and external altercations with her partner, Sue knew she could no longer suffer through this now normal lifestyle. As she gained access to a private internet browser, she discovered the possibilities RISE-NY could offer her situation. A confidential phone call with a representative from the organization led Sue to developing a safe and fast escape plan.
The shelter at RISE-NY offers private rooms for individuals or families, including their own bathroom, and provides personal care items. 24-hour staffing allows for residents to always have someone to turn to. This friendly environment includes a living room, recreational space, dining areas, and communal kitchen where residents prepare meals together.
Through direction from advocates at the shelter, Sue attended classes that provided information on the dynamics of abusive relationships and red flags to look for, so she can continue to form healthy relationships in the future. Through hard work and good standing, Sue regained custody of her child. They now live together, safe from harm. Sue has continued working with her advocate and counselor after leaving the shelter, to continue processing her past experience and work through the trauma she experienced.
If you are facing immediate danger, call 9-1-1. If you find yourself in an abusive relationship, contact RISE-NY at 607-754-4340 or 1-877-754-4340. Once initial contact is made, communication is offered through text at a different number. RISE-NY also provides an online chat feature Monday through Friday from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm at www.rise-ny.org.
You can directly impact the lives and situations of those similar to Sue. When you give to United Way of Broome County’s Annual Community Campaign, 100% of your donation goes directly into community projects and programs.