FAQs

How do I prepare a safety plan?

There are several ways a safety plan can be prepared. Examples include calling the SafeHouse crisis line or the National Domestic Violence Hotline and discussing your safety with trained staff or scheduling an assessment with a SafeHouse counselor to include safety planning.


What are the benefits of coming to the shelter?

The shelter at SafeHouse of Shelby County provides temporary housing for victims and their children who are fleeing potentially dangerous and abusive relationships. Because leaving the relationship can often be the riskiest time for a woman in terms of safety, the shelter is located in a confidential, secluded area, the address nor is phone number of SafeHouse listed. Also, residents of the shelter, just like community clients, are offered a variety of services to assist with their transition and healing process.


What procedures do I need to take to come to the shelter?

If you are in imminent danger, you should first dial 9-1-1. You can also call the SafeHouse crisis line at 205-669-7233 (SAFE) and trained staff will assess your safety. If it is determined that you need the services of the shelter, staff will tell you the next steps to take.


How can I assess my relationship in order to know if the shelter and SafeHouse services are what I need?

Complete the Domestic Violence Checklist. You can also call the SafeHouse crisis line at 205-669-7233 (SAFE) and have an assessment done over the phone. The staff person talking with you will refer you to services within the SafeHouse agency that may be of benefit to you.


What activities are provided for children at the shelter?

School-aged children will be enrolled in local schools during the school year. Preschool aged and younger children may participate in SafeHouse’s therapeutic childcare, depending on their needs. Each week, children of all ages are offered therapeutic support groups where they learn more about safety, violence and dealing with related emotions.


Am I eligible for the shelter or community services if I have been raped or otherwise sexually assaulted?

If you are in danger following a rape or sexual assault, you may be eligible for shelter services for your safety. If you are able to return home safely, free counseling services are available to you. You may also participate in other programs which will be assessed during an initial counseling session at SafeHouse.


What will it cost for me to come to shelter?

SafeHouse is a non-profit organization. All the services provided by SafeHouse are free of charge.


How do I know if I will be safe at shelter?

The shelter location is confidential and all clients, staff, and volunteers sign a confidentiality statement. Security measures have been taken to ensure your safety. SafeHouse has a close working relationship with local authorities.


What type of environment should I expect at the shelter?

SafeHouse is a large home-like atmosphere with separate bedrooms for each family. Although it is communal living, families have access to private in-room bathroom/shower, kitchen facilities, tv, phone, laundry, outdoor space, and other daily living resources.


Will I be provided with my own room? Will my children be in the same room with me?

SafeHouse makes every attempt to provide families with privacy when space allows. Children room with their parent.


How long may I stay at the shelter?

Length of stay is determined on an individual basis and is dependent on safety concerns and  continued need for emergency shelter.


Can I continue to receive services upon leaving the shelter?

Yes, ongoing support services, including individual, group, and family counseling, legal advocacy, and follow-up case management are made available to all persons exiting shelter.


Are there services I can receive if I do not reside at the shelter?

Yes, SafeHouse provides community counseling and other supportive services for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault living in the community.


What should I bring with me to shelter? If I am unable to bring personal belongings with me to the shelter, will they provide me with items I need?

Your safety is of utmost importance. It is not necessary to bring anything. Through the generous donations given by the community and friends of SafeHouse, the victims and children that come in and reside at our shelter are provided with essential items such as clothing, personal toiletries, and meals.


What about my pets?

We have a working relationship with other agencies to foster your pets.


If needed, is transportation available for me?

SafeHouse provides limited transportation for shelter residents.