CORA Launches Domestic Violence Awareness Month With Outreach, Education
Only agency in San Mateo County faces increasing demand, decreasing funding
Oct. 1, 2010: Community Overcoming Relationship Abuse (CORA), the only agency in San Mateo County dedicated to providing comprehensive domestic violence services, will once again be observing October as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month by reaffirming its commitment to ending domestic violence through intervention and prevention.
“While we deal with domestic violence issues every month and every day, October is a good time to rededicate ourselves to educating the public and making our voices heard about this often-silent epidemic,” says Melissa Lukin, executive director of CORA.
Due, in part, to the economic crisis that began several years ago, the number of incidences of domestic violence in the United States has risen in the past year:
Nearly four women are murdered by former or current husbands or boyfriends every day
• A woman is abused every nine seconds
• More than one million incidents of domestic violence occur each year
• Some 3 million–10 million children witness domestic violence every year
Here in San Mateo County, CORA has experienced a 28 percent increase in demand for its services since 2007, annually serving more than 8,000 victims of domestic violence and their children. The need to provide local life-saving services to victims of domestic violence is vital, as our own community struggles with recession. Unfortunately, while the need has increased by almost 28%, CORA’s revenue during the past year has decreased by 20 percent, largely due to Gov. Schwarzenegger’s line-item veto of funding for the Department of Public Health’s Domestic Violence Program. Despite losing what amounts to 15 percent of its budget during fiscal year 2009–2010, CORA
• fielded 5,081 calls on the 24-hour Crisis Hotline
• served 3,307 victims referred from Law Enforcement
• provided 3,574 individual counseling sessions
• assisted with 555 victims with legal issues, such as restraining orders and representation • offered 415 support group sessions
• provided 220 individuals with emergency shelter or transitional housing
As part of his proclamation designating October as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month last year, President Obama wrote: “To effectively respond to domestic violence, we must provide assistance and support that meets the immediate needs of victims. Facing social isolation, victims can find it difficult to protect themselves and their children. They require safe shelter and housing, medical care, access to justice, culturally specific services and economic opportunity.”
“We are heeding the president’s call, and we hope the community will help us provide precisely that type of assistance and support for the growing number of victims of domestic violence in San Mateo County,” Lukin says. Please join CORA in commemorating Domestic Violence Awareness Month by volunteering, donating, sharing your story and/or simply educating yourself and others about this devastating and often deadly crisis by visiting our website www.corasupport.org
Stay tuned for more news about our October initiatives, including our Helping Hands Breakfast on Thursday, Oct. 21 (for more information, click here: http://www.corasupport.org/?page_id=16).
CORA provides free and confidential services to victims and survivors of domestic/dating violence and abuse, including child and teen witnesses, in San Mateo County. Our services include a 24-hour hotline, shelter, support groups, legal services and more, in English, Spanish and Tagalog. CORA provides the county’s only emergency shelter and transitional housing for victims and survivors.
P.O. Box 5090, San Mateo, CA 94402
Business Line: 650-652-0800
24-hour Hotline: 800-300-1080