The Power of Community
John* (not his real name) found himself a victim of domestic violence during his last semester of college. Feeling lost and not knowing what to do, John sought the support of one of his professors. Luckily this professor had recently heard a presentation given by a PADV Outreach Advocate on the college’s campus. She provided John with an overview of how PADV could help and assured him that all of our services were free of charge. John remained hesitant, worried that being male and part of the LGBTQ community might make it more difficult for him to access the resources and support that PADV provides.
John later decided to face his fear, called our hotline and was connected with one of our Outreach Advocate. John, like most survivors, needed a safe place to live, and support for the steps he needed to take to achieve a life free of violence. After an initial conversation, PADV’s Outreach Advocate and John created a strong working relationship. John felt that his need for safe housing was his top priority and decided to take a semester break to get his plan for creating a safe and stable environment for himself in place. To meet his immediate needs for housing, PADV provided John with a voucher for a hotel stay. While staying at the hotel, John was able to secure full-time employment and move into his own apartment. This opened the door for John to return to college and receive his degree. With a degree in hand and a renewed sense of self-esteem and hope, John sought and received a higher paying position, one that allows him to meet his bills and save for the future.
John’s life was saved because of the care and concern of one professor and PADV’s outreach to college campuses. He knows that PADV will continue to provide him with help and assistance as needed. John found a road to hope and safety, became educated about healthy relationships, and learned the signs and red flags of unhealthy relationships. Most importantly John advocates within his own community to let everyone know that domestic violence can affect anyone regardless of race, class, gender, sexual orientation, language, or immigration status and that PADV will always be there to help.