What Is the Shelter like? We can house up to 32 survivors of domestic abuse, including their children. The Shelter is always staffed by experienced advocates and counselors. Our Shelter is a clean, cozy place and includes a large kitchen and living area. Play areas are available for the children. If you do not have clothing, school supplies, baby supplies or personal items we will give them to you.
You will live with other people who have also experienced domestic abuse. You’ll be expected to respect and honor each other. You’ll be expected to care for your children and cook your own meals (we will provide the food). You will clean up after yourself. You’ll be expected to participate in both group and individual counseling and other activities designed to help you become strong and free of abuse. We will be there every step of the way to help you along that journey from victim to survivor.
Yes, it is a challenge. But you will be in a safe and welcoming environment, and Esperanza will help you and support you in every way we can.
Who Can Come to the Shelter? We welcome all survivors of domestic abuse from Santa Fe County and the eight Northern Pueblos (and occasionally people from other parts of our state or country). In our experience, most of our clients are women; many of these women have children. But we also know that men are sometimes the victims of domestic abuse. We welcome these men (and sometimes their children) into Esperanza Shelter and its programs.
Esperanza Shelter also works with people who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex. We also shelter abused teens who are 18 years or older and senior citizens suffering from elder abuse. Please click here for more information.
How Will the Shelter Help Me? First, we will keep you safe and provide a comfortable place for you to live. We will also work with you through both individual and group counseling. We will help you understand and overcome many issues and the grief brought about from domestic abuse. Bilingual, trained and experienced counselors and advocates will work with you at a pace that will be comfortable for you. Together, we will set goals and work toward gaining confidence and independence. You’ll gain strength and wisdom through group meetings where you’ll meet others who have experienced abuse, sharing both the joys and sorrows of change.
We also provide counseling—again, free—for the children of our clients. Our child therapist will be available to work with your children, to help them understand and overcome anger, grief, anxiety and other feelings that might be weighing them down. Domestic abuse can crush a child’s spirit. We can help.
How Can I Get Help From Other Community Services? When you arrive at Esperanza Shelter, one of our family advocates will talk to you about your needs and the needs of your children. Our family advocates will help connect you with doctors, schools, court advocates or attorneys, mental health professionals and other community services that you may need. We’ve been working with the Santa Fe Community for decades and we know how to get you the help you need.
How Will I Find Housing When I’m Ready To Leave the Shelter? Esperanza’s counselors and advocates will help you plan to transition into safe housing for you and your children.