(Updated, 5/22/20) When the pandemic began, SAFE worked quickly to ensure that our staff and the people we serve were safe. Two months later, we not only continue, but have expanded many in-person services.
Our housing and forensic exams continue to operate, services like counseling are maintained through remote work, and we have found new and innovative ways to provide violence prevention support for parents and teens. Our SAFEline remains open, taking calls, chats, and texts from community members facing violence and abuse. In fact, we are now working with a hotel to shelter additional SAFE community members for a reasonable rate, paid by SAFE.
But as we contemplate the opening of local businesses, our response will be quite different from the pandemic. Instead of making rapid, swift changes, you will see us move more gradually, likely reintegrating our in-person work in a phased approach.
Like the rest of the world, SAFE is getting anxious. Our staff want to interact directly and in person with the people we serve. Our clients want to resume their healing journey through in-person group counseling, childcare services, and more. And those staff who have been coming to work during this pandemic would greatly appreciate having more people around to provide assistance and support.
However, we must be safe. Our first priority is to the community of adults and children who live with us, to those who rely on us for help, and to our staff. This means that while we are anxious to see and support each other in person, we must first find ways to do so safely. And, true to SAFE’s long-held values and practices, we will continue to take home and life circumstances into consideration as we return to on-site work.
We are so proud of our community’s resilience during this period of illness, fear, and severe disruption. And we are honored to continue to play an important role in maintaining and growing the safety of our community.
We will keep you updated as we adjust our operations.
Our doors stay open.
Again, when we say that our doors are open during the COVID-19 pandemic, we mean it: Our housing programs, including our Children’s Shelter, our Family Shelter, Foster and Adopt in Austin, Supportive Housing and Rapid Re-Housing are open. Our Eloise House sexual assault clinic remains open. Planet SAFE, our supervised visitation and exchange center, continues to provide safe exchanges. Many of our services – CARES for sex trafficking survivors, Strong Start for parents, Expect Respect for teens, and more – continue to work with clients in modified ways, as well as developing effective and creative ways to address prevention during this time of isolation, fear and heightened vulnerability.
When possible, our program and administrative teams are working remotely. Support services are being provided remotely by our legal services, counseling, peer support, resource advocacy programs to survivors of abuse. SAFE’s education and prevention teams are identifying innovative means by which to work with students, parents, schools and community groups to teach healthy relationships, consent, and respectful workplaces.
And, perhaps most importantly, our hotline (or SAFEline) will remain open and fully staffed. We know that home is not a safe place for everyone, and that violence can increase in times of stress and isolation. It is our goal to ensure that everyone that needs us can call the SAFEline and find the support they need. We think of the SAFEline as our front door – and our door is open.
To access the programs mentioned above, or if you think that you or someone you know may be a survivor of violence of abuse, please contact our SAFEline by phone at 512.267.SAFE (7233), text at 737.888.SAFE (7233), or chat at safeaustin.org/chat.
For now, we are extremely limiting volunteers and postponing all events and tours. If you have questions about your volunteer schedule or upcoming event, please contact your SAFE staff representative.
Out of an abundance of caution, these closures and modified operations will remain in effect until further notice and other programs may be limited or cancelled to help keep clients, staff, volunteers and supporters safe in response to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).
We encourage you to check back to this page for regular updates.
Again, if you need our assistance or believe you are the survivor of violence or abuse, please contact our SAFEline by contacting us by phone at 512.267.SAFE (7233), text at 737.888.SAFE (7233), or chat at safeaustin.org/chat.
Here is a list of resources for parents during the COVID-19 Shelter-In-Place period.
And here is a list of resources for teens and parents of teens during the COVID-19 pandemic.
And here is a guide for Family Safety Planning during COVID-19.
FABRIC MASKS: Our staff and clients are incredibly grateful for donated fabric masks!!
Due to the COVID-19 crisis, SAFE staff and clients would appreciate anyone that can donate extra fabric masks. While under normal circumstances fabric masks are not recommended for clinical use, CDC guidelines and emerging research shows that fabric masks may help prevent community spread of the virus. Any donated cloth masks will be made available to: (1) Staff still doing face-to-face work on campus, for example at our shelter, and (2) Clients who want or need masks for necessary activities out in the public. (At this time, these fabric masks will not be used by staff members caring for COVID-19 positive patients; the staff caring for COVID-19 positive patients, however, will utilize medical masks.)
If you have the ability to make masks for SAFE, here is an easy video with instructions: https://youtu.be/9tBg0Os5FWQ
You may mail fabric mask donations to The SAFE Alliance, PO Box 19454, Austin, TX, 78760. Or if you are able to do so safely you can take masks to SAFE’s Resource Center at 1515 Grove Blvd, Austin, TX, 78741 Monday through Friday, 8am-4pm. Masks should be made in a non-smoking environment and should be laundered before mailing. All donations are gratefully accepted, but please consider sending a minimum of 10 at a time to save on postage and laundry loads. Thank you!!
Nuestras puertas están abiertas.
Cuando decimos que nuestras puertas están abiertas durante la pandemia de COVID-19, lo decimos en serio. Nuestros programas de vivienda, que incluyen: el refugio para los menores, el refugio para la familia, la agencia de acogimiento y adopción de Austin, la agencia de vivienda de apoyo y de realojamiento rápido están abiertas. Nuestra clínica de asalto sexual, la ELOISE HOUSE, permanece abierta. SAFE PLANET, nuestro centro de visita supervisada e intercambio, sigue ofreciendo sus servicios. Numerosos otros servicios de SAFE como CARES que se ocupa de los sobrevivientes de tráfico sexual, STRONG START que ayuda a los padres, EXPECT RESPECT que educa a los adolescentes, y otros servicios más, siguen trabajando con nuestros clientes. Estos servicios están operando de manera modificada, para desarrollar formas eficaces y creativas de abordar la prevención durante este tiempo de aislamiento, de miedo y de mayor vulnerabilidad de las personas.
Cuando sea posible, nuestros equipos administrativos y de los programas estarán trabajando de forma remota. Servicios de apoyos legales: los servicios de apoyo están siendo proporcionados remotamente por nuestro servicio legal, consejería, apoyo entre pares, programas de defensa de recursos para sobreviviente de abuso. Los equipos de educación y prevención de SAFE están identificando medios innovadores para trabajar con estudiantes, padres, escuelas y grupos comunitarios para enseñar relaciones saludables, consentimiento y crear lugares de trabajo respetuosos.
Más importante todavía, nuestra línea directa de SAFELine permanecerá abierta con todo el personal a su disposición. Sabemos que el hogar no es un lugar seguro para todos, y que la violencia puede aumentar en tiempos de estrés y aislamiento. Nuestro objetivo es garantizar que todos los que nos necesiten puedan llamar a SAFEline. Consideramos SAFEline como nuestra puerta principal, y nuestra puerta está abierta.
Le recomendamos que vuelva a esta página para obtener actualizaciones periódicas.
Para acceder a los programas mencionados anteriormente, si usted o alguien que conoce puede ser un sobreviviente de violencia o abuso, comuníquese con nuestra SAFEline por teléfono al 512.267.SAFE (7233), envíe un mensaje de texto al 737.888.SAFE (7233), o chatee en safeaustin.org/chat
AQUÍ hay una lista de recursos para los padres durante el período de refugio en el lugar debido a la pandemia de COVID-19.
Y AQUÍ hay una lista de recursos para adolescentes y sus padres durante la pandemia de COVID-19.
Y AQUI hay un plan de seguridad para violencia familiar durante COVID-19.