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Domestic Abuse Intervention Services

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Crime & Law, Domestic Violence, Family Violence Shelters, Homeless & Housing, Homeless Shelters, Spouse Abuse Prevention

Mission:

Our mission is to empower those affected by domestic violence and advocate for social change through support, education and outreach.

Geographic areas served: Dane County, Wisconsin

Programs: DAIS provides support, safety, and advocacy for adult and child victims of domestic abuse in Dane County. We do this through our 24-hour crisis/help line, support groups, crisis response and legal advocacy programs, 25-bed emergency shelter, programming for children, community education and outreach, and prevention curriculum for middle-school aged students.

Community Stories

17 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

I called to talk about my situation and Tiffany answered after about 8 rings. She was not helpful. She voulntarily told me she has worked there for a month which makes me understand why she does not understand domestic violence. She definately should not be in charge of intake calls. Give the girl some training. People should be able to get away from a variety of abusive situations. She put me on hold and told me we only house people who are being abused, no questions about my storyand when I asked who she spoke with she would not provide me a name and hung up on me. I expected better from a place who has so much public funding. I suggest people to donate somewhere else.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I understand that it can be difficult when the current shelter has to run a wait list. That is why DAIS is working so hard right now to build a much bigger shelter. They do amazing work despite the limitations they face.

2

General Member of the Public

Rating: 1

where do you tell a victim to go when they need shelter and you simply say sorry we have a waitlist. What do you think they are going to do? They are going to stay with the abuser because it's the only place they have...........

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a survivor domestic violence.

I am a former employee of DAIS.

I am currently a supportive community member.

I have worked as an advocate and trainer in the area of intimate partner violence since 1992.

DAIS services are critical and necessary. The people touched by the work are forever changed. Until the violence stops, I hope DAIS is there to support those in need.

13

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am privileged to be a volunteer member of the DAIS committee for the annual fund raising “Celebrate Independence” luncheon. Economic times have created difficult situations for many, including victims of domestic violence. In the past year, DAIS has received 352 calls seeking information about shelter (144% increase), 293 new crisis response clients (49% increase) and 964 nights that people have been waitlisted for shelter from their abuser (1621% increase). In the past year, Dane County has experienced an increasing number of deaths resulting from domestic violence. This dismal picture is exacerbated by the fact that while demand has dramatically increased, retaining funding for important DAIS services has become much more challenging. DAIS is the only domestic violence agency supporting Dane County. Dane County has a projected 2009 population of 491,357. DAIS serves this population with a budget of just over $1 million and through a 25-bed safe-house residence. What they accomplish with minimal resources for the population base they serve is commendable – direct service to victims, community outreach and training for law enforcement, human services staff and other related professionals. In spite of their sterling reputation and the need for their services growing at astonishing rates, they unfortunately continue to have to direct a significant amount of staff resources to just maintaining their budget, let alone grow it to better need the pressing needs.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am very honored to provide this small service(cleaning)to DAIS. Although I know that the staff has to meet challenging circumstances on a daily basis, they still manage to maintain a professional and positive attitude. This past year was particularly traumatic with several high-profile cases of domestic violence in Dane County including the murder of two mothers and their daughters. Although the staff was deeply affected, they continued to provide the support, information and comfort so needed by victims of domestic abuse. Yesterday there was an article in the local paper (Wisconsin State Journal)about the huge increase in the number of people seeking DAIS services. I know that even with its limited resources, DAIS will continue to try to meet that need with knowledge and compassion.

10

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

One of my daer friends is employed by DAIS and hearing her stories about clients and their experiences reminds me of the importance of such an organization.

14

Board Member

Rating: 5

Everyone deserves to reach their full potential. Everyone deserves a safe, loving home. That is why I volunteer. I want all the women who experiance violence to know that we, as a community, care for her and are there for her...we want her to reach her full potential-however she may describe it. DAIS provides the love, safety, and reality of "next step" planning for people to get into a safe, secure life pattern.

15

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Domestic Abuse Intervention Services (DAIS) helps provide a safe place for many women while they find their independence. It is a great organization, with dedicated staff and volunteers who make the vision of the organization a reality. I have witnessed personally, through this dedication, the power of women helping women achieve their dreams.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

This is an organization that does terrific work day in and day out, but is stressed from too much demand for its services. It is a place of safety, comfort, and new beginnings. I am proud to be on its board even though it means learning things about your community and humanity that you find personally challenging. Volunteering for and supporting DAIS is very rewarding, because they are making a difference and changing lives of victims and future generations.

14

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Domestic Abuse Intervention Services is an organization that strives to empower women by providing services and support they might not otherwise receive when facing the challenges that come with domestic violence. I started volunteering last October, and I have seen the broad reach of the organization's positive influence. Whether through advocacy, the shelter, the Crisis Line, the Crisis Response program, support groups, legal assistance, the Kid's program, and its extensive volunteer training program, DAIS is truly working to make positive changes in the lives of its clients, its staff, and the community writ large.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

The events that finally prompted me to seek help through Domestic Abuse Intervention Services were traumatizing and left me feeling ashamed, embarrassed, guilty, and numb; detached from any and all emotion. By the time I called asking for information, I was prepared to die. I think I even anticipated it. Not only was I living in fear every day of what might happen to me, but I had completely given up on myself. I was in so much pain, and I knew it was only a matter of time before I couldn’t do it anymore. I lost all hope, and I hated myself. When I called for help, I had no idea what services could be offered or if there even was anything that anyone could do to keep me safe. The person who I talked to that night was so nice and patient with me. She must have been able to tell that I was scared, but she gave me all the information I needed and got me to where I needed to be: the shelter. I almost didn’t end up going, but something in her voice seemed comforting and safe and I went. That decision changed my life. Throughout my stay there, I had constant support from both the other women living there and all of the staff members. It was the first time in a long time that I didn’t feel alone and worthless and pathetic. I saw the other women as strong, smart, funny, amazing, and inspiring. By talking with the staff and my caseworker, I gradually started having important and life-changing realizations. They helped me actually believe that none of what happened was my fault. Almost everyone it does happen to thinks they should have done something different or been different in some way and they blame themselves because of that. But no matter what was different, it still could have happened. It was never in our control to begin with and that's not our fault. We aren't to blame. I am not to blame. Being able to accept that finally allowed me to start healing. And with that, I was able to forgive the person who hurt me, which is for my sake only. I’m not angry anymore. Really, I feel sad for him because he’ll never know love or compassion with all the hate he must have in his heart. But by forgiving him, it’s as though I am no longer connected to him, and he has no control over me anymore. He will never be able to hurt me again. I finally feel free. I’ve also finally forgiven myself for everything. I understand now that my negative ways of coping and the harm I've caused myself weren’t because I hated myself. I was surviving, and whether they were bad or good, my instincts kept me alive, and that’s the most important thing. My experience at the DAIS shelter saved my life. I’m not only surviving now, but I’m finally starting to live. I feel incredibly lucky to have ended up where I did, because the journey has been beautiful. I’ll never be able to convey how appreciative I am and how much the people there mean to me. They will forever be my role models and my heroes.

12

Volunteer

Rating: 5

DAIS is an amazing organization that not only works to provide shelter, advice, and resources to victims of domestic abuse but also works to educate the public about the issues surrounding domestic violence. Prior to becoming a part of the DAIS team, I was completely uneducated about all of the barriers and problems that victims face when trying to overcome their fears and leave their abuser and I hope that I am able to pass on what I have learned to my family and friends. DAIS does a lot with what little money and shelter space it has.

13

Volunteer

Rating: 5

DAIS is an organization about empowerment and respect. It offers services and resources that empower women to make their own choices about their lives and their safety. This is what I love about DAIS; they respect women and their capabilities. They provide an (unfortunately) necessary resource for families in the community that they cannot find elsewhere. They provide safety, support, and advocacy and they do it with the utmost respect and dignity.

10

Board Member

Rating: 5

I am just beginning to get acquainted with this organization and am totally impressed. I am serving on the board of trustees where our primary purpose is to increase DAIS awareness and donations, furthering our reach. The need is definitely greater than the funds, but everyone is working so positively to enact change one step at a time. The staff & volunteers work with very limited resources to make unbelievably positive & measurable differences for people in the Madison community. I am honored & excited to be a part of helping people change their lives for the better.

7

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Amazing organization that truly helps the public. Would not know what we would do without them. The help they provide to women in need and knowledge they spread to the public is un measureable.

8

Board Member

Rating: 5

Domestic Abuse Intervention Services has provided vital services to the community for over 30 years. Their work helping victims of domestic violence and educating the community on the impact of Domestic Violence has been wonderful. I have found the staff to be dedicated and professional, they are truly helping people deal with the trauma of DV. Please help DAIS work towards an end to Domestic Violence in our community.