Wellspring Uses Summer Camps and Recreation to Support Both Children and Parents
In a given year, as many as 50 children and teens will be residents in either Wellspring’s domestic violence shelter or supportive housing program, NewView. Children and teens are affected by domestic violence and relationship abuse as much as adults. Just witnessing violence in the home can have lasting effects on children and teenagers. As with any abusive relationship, survivors can experience confusion, anger, and depression, which makes specialized approaches to younger survivors paramount.
To help the youth in such situations, Wellspring staff work to provide a small level of comfort, familiarity, and fun thanks in large part to the support of local donors and the Hawley Foundation. Over the course of the 2015 summer, Wellspring staff worked with clients to send their children to a summer camp or recreational program as well as providing youth outings to local recreational services, and in some instances, daycare. The staff were able to provide over 8 weeks of camp and 15 outings to 10 children.
Beyond providing a summer of fun, these programs are also a benefit to the parents, as they work to break free of domestic violence. With this support, the parents are given a greater opportunity to become financially stable, to advance in their jobs so they can attain a living wage. This livelihood is what provides the stability that keeps the family from returning to abuse—allowing them to build loving homes where children no longer live in fear.
Wellspring provides hotline, emergency counseling, legal advocacy, comprehensive case management, support, information, and accompaniment during sexual assault forensic exams, and other service to more than 1,000 victims of domestic violence and sexual assault each year. At Wellspring we believe that the best approach to ending interpersonal violence is prevention. To help address this need, we invest in volunteers, prevention programs, and community outreach. For more information, please contact our office at 518.583.0280.