Over the past decade, both SWC and SMC have loaded onto ferries to bring our concerts to Whidbey Island to raise funds for CADA - Citizens Against Domestic and Sexual Abuse. On April 20th, SWC continues the tradition with Legends of Rock. Below, CADA outlines the many avenues through which they provide support and resources to vulnerable members of their community.
We’d like to share a story with you, to help you better understand what we do to help empower survivors of domestic and sexual abuse. A woman, we’ll call her Stacy, came to CADA a couple of years ago. Stacy had a significant history of severe domestic violence with her longtime boyfriend of nine years. Unfortunately, her newly born daughter was taken away by child services because of the domestic violence in the family. When Stacy came to us we were able to get her into our emergency shelter and help connect her with resources. One of those resources was a domestic violence protection order. Stacy was awarded a five year felony protection order against her abuser and he was imprisoned for his crimes. Another way we help empower survivors is one-on-one advocacy counseling; Stacy and her advocate spoke about safety planning, stress management, the cycle of abuse, and self-esteem awareness. Throughout her stay in the shelter, she was able to get assistance by participating in classes such as parenting, GED, and money management. By the end of Stacy’s stay at the shelter she was employed and received custody of her daughter.
CADA’s goal is to help empower survivors as well as assist them to recover and heal from the damage of abuse. Our mission statement is to “advocate with compassion for victims of domestic and sexual abuse, educate the public about such forms of abuse, develop programs to help prevent abuse in the future, and provide leadership in the community on issues of concern to all people.” We offer 24–hour crisis line advocacy to victims of domestic and sexual abuse. The primary focus is client safety and developing tools for empowerment and autonomy. Advocates can also help survivors understand their legal rights and options, and assist with protection orders. Advocates may accompany survivors to hearings related to domestic violence and/or sexual assault.
We offer support groups for survivors, positive parenting classes, and general advocate training to the public. CADA also offers prevention training in schools. Staff members work with elementary school children to promote awareness and education about bullying. Healthy relationship and dating violence prevention are presented in the middle and high schools. Advocates are available to meet one-on-one with youth.
CADA is committed to serving our community and spreading awareness about domestic and sexual abuse. We want to support healthy families and prevent the cycle of abuse.