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2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Americans Overseas Domestic Violence Crisis Center

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Civil Rights, Crime & Law, Crime & Legal-Related, Domestic Violence, Family Violence Shelters, Homeless & Housing, Human Services, Victims Services, Women, Womens Rights

Mission: The Americans Overseas Domestic Violence Crisis Center works with abused Americans and their children in foreign countries to provide domestic violence andchild abuse advocacy, resources and tools so that they can navigate thecomplicated jurisdictional, legal & social international landscapes,to be able to live their lives free of abuse either in the foreign countryor back in the United States. This is achieved via an international tollfree crisis line, 866-USWOMEN, accessible from 175 countries, servinga population estimated at 5.25 million American civilians overseas.

Results: In the past 10 years, 2001-2011, we have received 13,175 crisis calls, emails & live chats. We helped 2,848 Americans callers, mostly women, in 101 countries. We have provided "Flights to Freedom" for 81 families, provided 49 legal consultations and paid 24 legal retainers to enable battered mothers to file for custody of their children. We have also provided 62 families with funds for emergency needs and provided counseling services to 56 families.

Target demographics: Americans overseas civilian population estimated at 6 million and military personnel and their families estimated at 1 million

Direct beneficiaries per year: 500 families

Geographic areas served: Worldwide

Programs: The organization provides a lifeline of hope to American victims of domestic violence and sexual assault that live and travel overseas. Through our international,toll-free crisis line (accessible from 175 countries) we serve the approximately 7million Americans living abroad and 68 million who travel abroad annually. We help these populations navigate the complicated jurisdictional,legal, and social landscapes,the services we provide include danger to safety planning, relocation assistance, legal consultation, assistance with housing, and professional counseling.

Community Stories

5 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

3 Spascuma70

Client Served

Rating: 5

In 2007 I was in a very abusive marriage & in Santiago Chile. I was desperate for help & had no idea how I was going to get out out alive with my 3 children. I received a call from my brother & his wife who had just seen Paula Lucas on the Today show and her interview about the American Overseas Domestic Violence Crisis Center. They gave me the information I needed to get in touch with them. They helped me get a birth abroad for my daughter ( she was a newborn ) & paid for her US Passport as well as assisted me with the US Embassy to get a way home for us. I can not express the grateful heart I have for Ms Lucas & her organization. My children were 13, 1.5 years & 3 months old. We came back to the states & the help continued every step of way to rebuild our life. I owe it all to this organization. My children are safe, I am safe and we have over come a very traumatic time. I can not say thank you enough & on holidays & birthdays Paula Lucas's name is mentioned, because with out her, I know for a fact I would of not made it out of Chile alive. I often share the American Overseas Domestic Violence Crisis Center Facebook page to let more people know about them. September 29,2016 I finally shared my story with my community at Night of Hope. It was to bring awareness to Domestic Violence in the community as well as an evening out for the women who are living in the shelters here starting over. Donations of dresses, shoes, purses & jewelry where collected so the victims could feel beautiful again. A night just for them. I would not be able to help theses women if I didn't receive the help I received from American Overseas Domestic Violence Crisis Center.
Pictures below are 1st pic when we knew we were going home,2nd the kids after arriving in FL, 3rd us now, 4th my picture from Night of Hope.

Thank you Paula Lucas. I owe my life to you, I am grateful everyday I see my children's faces.

Susana P
Ocala Florida


Client Served

Rating: 5

AODVC has been a God-send since my children and I first left to a domestic violence shelter in Europe. They have provided support in finding help, contacts, and guidance overseas as well as in the USA. AODVC has written letters and amicus briefs to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights for our case to help secure Interim Measures of protection. We would not have survived this far if it had not been for the good people at AODVC who have been unwaveringly there for us when there is no one else to help Americans overseas but AODVC. There are no words to describe these amazing people and how grateful I am for being there for us for services that were necessary for our life-threatening situation and were not provided anywhere else.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was in the United States trying to fight a return order to Ireland. The AODVCC gave me support in many ways and although I still had to return to Ireland, I was fully prepared coming back and knew that if I needed help, they were there.

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Americans Overseas Domestic Violence Crisis Center saved me and my kids from a very difficult situation outside the borders of the U.S. They used every resource in their power to safely return us back home safe and sound. Due to their advocacy, crisis hotline support and relocation funding, we are starting a new life filled with peace, tolerance and love. Without AODVCC, I would had never had the courage to make the right decision for myself and my children. Words cannot express the gratitude we will always have in our hearts for this agency. Thank you AODVCC, we will always remember for the rest of our lives your support and help. You are truly the best!


Client Served

Rating: 5

My daughters and I were stuck in Canada ( not overseas but still a foreign country). Since they were born in Canada and we had lived there since their birth I could not bring them back to the states without their father's permission. He refused because his mother wanted our oldest ( she was the one who assaulted me while i was holding the kids who were both under 2 yrs old). I was illegal because they refused to allow me to get my papers and had kept me isolated until i managed to get the three of us out of the house and to a shelter. I was stuck in Canada because of the Hague convention which is what makes taking a child from their natural residence to another country illegal. I had to get the courts permission and yet the Canadian government would only give me services for the kids leaving me with less then 150 a month to pay for food, diapers, formula and utilities. AODVCC were a life saver, they sent me money orders to buy food for the kids and when I finally won court approval they helped me get back to the states and since I choose to move to Oregon where they are located they were able to help me get started in being self sufficient. for the past 5 years i have been taking care of my kids and keeping them safe by myself only due to the fact that I had help getting started. They made a huge difference in my kids lives. They are both healthy and happy and safe. Without their help, i would not be sitting here in a nice townhouse listening to my girls outside playing and laughing.