With one in three Arizona women likely to suffer acts of violence during their lifetime and those odds even higher for women living in rural communities, Time Out Shelter has launched a new way to reach victims.
Last week, Time Out, Inc. launched www.timeoutshelter.org.
The Web site provides a safe, secure way for domestic violence victims to find comprehensive information, resources and ways of getting help.
The Web site is designed around Time Out’s mission to help individuals break the cycle of abuse in their lives.
“With changing information needs, increased access to the Internet and rural domestic violence resource deficits, it makes sense to provide women and men with online access to comprehensive victim service information,” said Gerry Bailey, Time Out’s executive director.
“We stand ready to serve victims who desire immediate intervention. Our Web site also embodies our commitment to supporting those who want to consider options other than emergency shelter.”
As with many domestic violence programs across the country, Time Out is experiencing an increasing demand for services among domestic violence victims living in and around Gila County.
Agency data reveals a 42 percent increase for emergency shelter among women and their children in the last half of 2010 compared to the same period in 2009.
Requests for community-based assistance among victims of abuse who prefer to stay at home grew by 67 percent throughout 2010. In addition, the number of children in the emergency shelter program grew by 11 percent last year.
With such startling statistics, Jessye Johnson, director of member services for the Arizona Coalition Against Domestic Violence, said Time Out’s new site comes at an important time.
“Having resources and services available in rural areas can help to ease the actual and imposed isolation that victims experience,” she said.
“Secure Web-based resources are an excellent way for someone in a rural community to maintain anonymity and confidentiality if reaching out in person is not an option.”
The site includes:
• Background information on the agency, its leadership and major supporters
• Guidance for those who want to help someone being abused
• Ways to make a difference through contributions of goods or services
• Information on Time Out Thrift Shop including special sales and donation guidelines
• Links to domestic violence-related news and events
The site, designed by Webbness in Payson with content developed by Semilla Business Solutions in Chandler, has a screen reader tool for the visually impaired.
Since opening in 1993, Time Out has served more than 5,000 male and female victims of domestic abuse and their children.
On top of emergency shelter beds, Time Out offers educational services, advocacy, therapeutic programs, specialized children’s services, lay legal advocacy, employment support and transitional housing for long-term support.
The agency’s community-based program assists domestic violence victims who want help but prefer to live at home.
Time Out Thrift Shop sells gently used goods. Sales from the store support a portion of the agency’s operating costs.
For more information on domestic violence programs and services, contact Time Out, Inc. at (928) 472-8007 or at www.timeoutshelter.org.