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Thank you and Happy Holidays!

Posted by on Dec 22, 2016 in of Healing, of Help, of Hope |

Cherokee Family Violence Center would like to thank our community for the generous support we have all year and especially during the holidays.

THANK YOU and Happy Holidays from CFVC Staff!

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As a reminder, we are still have our raffle open! We will being drawing to see who the winner is on Sunday, January 8th at 2PM at CFVC. Winner does not need to be present to win. Tickets are $25 each. If you want to buy your chance to win, click here.

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CFVC will be closed during the holidays. We will be open again Wednesday, December 28th. If you are in need of assistance, please call our hotline at 770-479-1703.

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CFVC Named Community Partner of the Year

Posted by on Dec 22, 2015 in of Hope | 0 comments

CFVC was honored to receive the award for Community Partner of the Year from Caminar Latino. Pictured are Jessica Nunan (Executive Director, Caminar Latino), Meg Rogers (Executive Director, CFVC) and Vivan Keller (Multicultural Advocate, CFVC)

CFVC was honored to receive the award for Community Partner of the Year from Caminar Latino. Pictured are Jessica Nunan (Executive Director, Caminar Latino), Meg Rogers (Executive Director, CFVC) and Vivan Keller (Multicultural Advocate, CFVC)

CFVC was honored to be invited to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Caminar Latino’s “Latino Journey” with a “Gracias Party” on November 7, 2015. During the event, attendees enjoyed a video presentation of the history of Caminar Latino, followed with remarks by their Executive Director, Jessica Nunan, along with a plated dinner. Honors were presented to Sister Barbara, who received the Visionary Award, Dr. Julia Perilla, who received the Lifetime Award, and BB&T who were named Business of the Year. CFVC Executive Director, Meg Rogers, and Multicultural Advocate, Vivian Keller, received the Community Partner of the Year Award on behalf of our agency. The award is presented to an individual, business, or organization that has demonstrated exemplary commitment and has made significant contributions in helping families in their journey towards non-violence.

Caminar Latino or “Latino Journey” carries out its mission by creating safe spaces for each family member to begin their journey towards non-violence. Caminar Latino is Georgia’s first and only comprehensive domestic violence intervention program for Latino families. Today Caminar Latino is a nationally recognized program for their approach in addressing intimate partner violence.  CFVC had maintained an ongoing partnership with Caminar Latino for many years, with our Multicultural Department working collaboratively with their agency. With CFVC spearheading the State of Georgia’s Spanish Language Domestic Violence Hotline this year, our relationship has continued to grow.

We appreciate Caminar Latino’s recognition of our efforts to serve the Latino community through naming Cherokee Family Violence Center as their Community Partner of the Year.

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Statewide Spanish Language Domestic Violence Hotline Inaugurated

Posted by on Aug 7, 2014 in of Hope | 0 comments

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Cherokee Family Violence Center hosted the official launch of Georgia’s first Statewide Hotline for Spanish speaking victims of Domestic Violence on July 18, 2014 at the Bluffs in Canton, Georgia.  The Inauguration celebrated a momentous day for victims of Domestic Violence who, for too long, have been isolated from safety and resources by lack of access to help in their native language.  CFVC Staff were joined at the event by allies, funders, Advocates, survivors and champions in the fight against Domestic Violence and the belief that access to safety should not depend on where you live in the state, or on the language that you speak.

CFVC is home to a thriving Multicultural Program, which had humble beginnings in 2002.  At that time discussions began as to how our agency could better reach and serve victims from the growing Latino community in Cherokee County.  Since that time, CFVC has consistently worked to overcome our own cultural ineffectiveness, addressing issues such as our lack of Spanish speaking Advocates, and the lack of culturally appropriate food and clothing in our shelter.  We have championed the work of challenging the growing anti-immigrant culture that was present in our community, and how the lack of access to supportive resources made it incredibly dangerous for Latino victims of Domestic Violence in Cherokee County.

It was in 2002, that CFVC identified a definitive need to establish a hotline so that Spanish speaking victims could access our services.  We determined the need for a staff with Advocates and volunteers that were bi-cultural and bilingual, and that truly understood the specialized needs of Spanish speaking victims.  We acknowledged the necessity of services to be offered 24 hours a day and, by the end of 2003, CFVC launched the Cherokee County 24 Hour Spanish Language Domestic Violence Hotline and Multicultural Program.

Since those humble beginnings, the CFVC Multicultural Program has assisted 346 families from 56 countries.  Under the current leadership of Pilar Sarmiento and the support of Vivian Keller, the Multicultural Program has continued to grow with the addition of specialized advocacy services, Spanish language support groups, housing assistance for immigrant victims escaping their abuse, translation and interpretation services for court hearings, and direct assistance to victims of Domestic Violence with qualifying immigration remedies such as U-Visas and VAWA relief.  It is with these building blocks in place, that we finally felt in a position to expand our services to Spanish speaking victims throughout the State of Georgia.

In 2013, CFVC applied for and was awarded a grant through the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council to provide a 24 hour hotline to Spanish speaking victims of Domestic Violence for the State of Georgia.  Using the existing Statewide Domestic Violence Hotline accessed at 1(800)33-HAVEN, callers now have the option to “Press 2” to be connected directly with a Spanish speaking Domestic Violence Advocate from anywhere in the State of Georgia.  The caller will be connected with a CFVC Advocate, who will then have the ability to provide lifesaving services to victims, in their own language, by conducting immediate safety planning and connecting them with the local Domestic Violence program in their area.

The scope of this project is matched by the talented staff of our Multicultural Program: Pilar Sarmiento (Multicultural Program Director), Vivian Keller (Advocate), Lorena Jacobo (Outreach Advocate), Claudia Estrada-Petit (Hotline Advocate), Isadora Fernandez-Velez (Hotline Advocate), Jessica Garcia (Hotline Advocate), Maria Martinez-Garcia (Hotline Advocate), and Mercedes Sherman (Hotline Advocate).  Each of the members of our Multicultural Program Staff were thanked by CFVC’s Executive Director, Meg Rogers, at the Inauguration Ceremony.  Our partners in this project, the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council and Georgia Coalition Against Domestic Violence were also recognized during the event.

The Inauguration featured a keynote address on Immigrants and Domestic Violence by Dr. Julia Perilla, of the Department of Psychology at Georgia State University and a moving survivor story by CFVC Program participant, Maricela, who shared her appreciation for CFVC’s Multicultural Program and her hope that victims throughout the State will now be able to access the needed services that she was able to access in Cherokee County.

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CFVC Launches Statewide Spanish Hotline

Posted by on Apr 17, 2014 in of Hope | 0 comments

After weeks of collaborative efforts, the Georgia Statewide Spanish Language Hotline is now activated!

Why a  Statewide Spanish Language Hotline?

In addition to the usual obstacles of leaving an abusive relationship, immigrant victims of Domestic Violence face many challenges because of language, cultural barriers, and lack of knowledge about resources, keeping victims isolated from seeking support.  On top of that, complex legal and immigration systems are difficult to navigate, shutting down opportunities for a safer outcome of survivors.  Abusers often use these barriers to their advantage in order to isolate even further the victim, preventing them from acquiring information about their legal rights and resources.

In Georgia, culturally specific services tend to be clustered in the metro Atlanta region.  The rural areas’ victims of Domestic Violence have limited access to services, especially with regard to interpreters.  To ensure that immigrant victims of Domestic Violence in Georgia have access to linguistically and cultural competent services, Cherokee Family Violence Center applied for federal funding to implement a 24-hour Statewide Spanish Language crisis line.  Funding was awarded and on April 14th, 2014, this long needed service was officially launched.

How will this new service operate?

Any victim calling the well-established GA Statewide Hotline (1800-33 HAVEN) has now the option to speak to a bilingual advocate if selecting option 2 on the prompt menu. The caller will be connected to our trained Spanish speaking Advocates who will be able to assess for safety, provide information about resources and connect the victim to the appropriate resources in their area.

If a client in your agency or someone you know can benefit from this new service make sure to provide them with the Statewide GA Hotline (1 800 33 HAVEN) and have the caller choose option 2 for Spanish.

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