Advancing the Field

picture three womenSince the beginning of the shelter movement, advocates, shelters, and state coalitions have been advancing our work forward. In the last 30 years, the social context for women and children has changed substantially. Today, the diversity of survivors needing and seeking services is far greater and our practice is evolving quickly to stay responsive and relevant. We have learned so much from our practice, our colleagues, and our relationships with women and children.

The same is true for our work with children. In the early 1980’s state coalitions created children’s caucus groups. These groups were designed to create a space for advocates who cared about children to come together and discuss issues and problem solve. Out of these groups came the first support groups for children, art therapy programs, and other activities that helped children begin to heal and redress the wrongs in their lives. Today, many of the evidenced based models that you see in publications and highlighted at conferences, hold the same principles that advocates understood 30 years ago. We are grateful for researchers who have partnered with us to acknowledge and measure our good work, bring us theirs, and help move our practice forward. Together, researchers and advocates can do great things when the relationships are mutually respected.

This section of the website can serve as a place to keep that learning going, specifically as it relates to children and their mothers.