HAVEN’s mission is to help hurting people heal from abuse as we work to prevent domestic violence and sexual assault through community education and intervention.
When HAVEN in Lee County opened its doors in 1985, its founders dreamed of creating a service agency that would serve all victims of domestic violence and sexual assault – men, women and children. Staffed by one person and housed in a small downtown office, HAVEN provided crisis intervention and emergency services to victims.
Through the years, the agency has grown to embrace roles that range from supporting survivors of abuse in healing to seeking active engagement of the community in prevention efforts.
In 2011, 1,600 victims of domestic violence and sexual assault tuned to HAVEN for help.
In 2011, victims spent almost 3,000 nights under HAVEN’s protective roof. While at HAVEN, victims receive help through crisis intervention and emergency shelter, support groups, court advocacy, hospital accompaniment, case management referrals and transportation.
Since its inception, HAVEN’s Board of Directors, the Executive Director, and the staff have worked to establish relationships with other agencies in Lee County to maximize services; the Sheriff’s Department, Sanford Police Department, Central Carolina Community Hospital, the Department of Social Services, Lee County Schools, and the Lee County Court System. HAVEN provides public awareness programming, professional training for individuals serving women, children, and families as well as educational materials for the community-at-large.
More recently, HAVEN staff, including trained sexual assault specialist, provide community education aimed at increasing knowledge about sexual assault, exploring personal opinions and attitudes, and fostering caring responses to victims.