May 4, 2020

Domestic violence nonprofits need our help now more than ever

That's why The Allstate Foundation created an emergency response fund to help programs across the country.

Since 2005, The Allstate Foundation has been committed to ending domestic violence through financial empowerment. Learn more at Photo by Getty Images

Nearly every aspect of our lives have been affected by the COVID-19 crisis. For some, the anxiety, stress, and social isolation of life in a pandemic has been particularly disruptive.

That’s why The Allstate Foundation gave $5 million to help victims of domestic violence, youth in need, first responders, and communities across the country.

As part of this commitment, The Allstate Foundation has granted $500,000 to the National Network to End Domestic Violence. This donation is being used to create an emergency response fund to help small domestic violence programs across the country. For survivors, the COVID-19 pandemic presents additional barriers to breaking free as quarantine, social isolation, and financial stressors can provide an opportunity for abusive partners to take further advantage of their victims.

“Programs are facing similar challenges as they do after a natural disaster, but COVID-19 is severely stressing the entire country at once,” Deborah J. Vagins, NNEDV president and CEO said in a statement. “Front-line local domestic violence workers are keeping their programs open with lower donations and reduced staffing, but they critically need funding. This grant program will provide assistance to small programs when it is needed the most.”

One of the best ways to help end domestic abuse is to know the signs. During the COVID-19 crisis, perpetrators might withhold important items like hand sanitizer, disinfectants, and key information about the pandemic. Additionally, abusers might withhold insurance cards, threaten to cancel insurance, or prevent survivors from seeking medical attention if they need it.

It’s also important to look for signs of financial abuse. These include when an abuser steals or hides money from their partner, intentionally overuses their credit cards or refuses to pay bills, or if they shut the victim out of all financial decisions.

Being in a domestic violence situation can be very isolating. But there are steps you can take to help someone who may be a victim. Letting a friend who may be suffering know that you’re there to listen can make a difference. So reach out, express concern, help connect them with local resources, and let them know that you are there if or when they need something.

If you are a victim of domestic abuse and are in need of support, The National Domestic Violence Hotline is available 24/7 at 800-799-7233 and through chat. You can also text LOVEIS to 22522.

The Renewal Project

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