JFCS offering SARAH Supports domestic violence group this fall

Can you imagine staying with your abuser because that is the only way to protect your children? Can you imagine sleeping with your purse under your arm to protect your few valuables and ID from being destroyed? Can you imagine hiding your clothes in your children’s closets because your abuser cuts them up and then denies it? This is what some victims of domestic violence experience every day. An abuser’s best weapons are secrecy and isolation, slowly chipping away at their victim’s support system.

Knowing how overwhelming abuse can be and how important it is to have a strong support system, Jewish Family & Children’s Service (JFCS) launched the SARAH Supports domestic violence support group in 2019. The goal was to ensure that victims and survivors have a safe place to come together and know they are not alone. The need for this group became even greater during the pandemic, when many victims were forced to isolate with their abusers.

During each 10-week session, participants learn about rediscovering their selfhood, gratitude, self-esteem, channeling negative emotions, assertiveness skills, and building healthy boundaries. Many victims’ power and control have been stripped away from them; they eventually learn that in order to survive, they need to stay quiet. It takes time and skills to learn how to be assertive and establish boundaries, without fear of negative consequences. SARAH Supports helps participants to learn those skills.

JFCS will be offering a new. virtual session of SARAH Supports this fall. The first meeting will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 12. Participation is free, but advance registration is required by contacting Hilary Platt, Project SARAH Domestic Violence coordinator, at (856) 424-1333 or hplatt@jfedsnj.org

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