We're available 24/7 to speak confidentially with victims, survivors, friends and family affected by abuse. We offer crisis intervention, immediate support, safety planning and more to all callers and chatters. With the help of our compassionate, highly trained advocates and our cutting-edge digital services, we work every day to engage with individuals and communities around the country to spread awareness and education about domestic violence and abuse.
Additionally, loveisrespect, a project of the National Domestic Violence Hotline, is the ultimate resource for fostering healthy dating attitudes and relationships among teens. Loveisrespect offers phone, live chat, and text services ("loveis" to 22522).
This year, The Hotline and loveisrespect have been greatly impacted by media exposure surrounding the NFL, and awareness about domestic violence is at an all time high. This awareness has helped thousands of survivors break their silence, and immediately increased our contact volume by 84 percent. Our contact volume over two months later had not decreased.
Here in Austin, the University of Texas announced a first-of-its kind program, the Sports Leadership Institute, with a focus on educating student athletes and coaches on a variety of life skills, including healthy relationships - they named The Hotline as a partner.
1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men aged 18 and older in the United States have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime. 1 in 3 adolescents in the US is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner.
Every day, 24/7, our advocates at The Hotline and loveisrespect are there to answer these calls, chats and texts from people whose lives are affected by domestic violence. With your help, we're able to build capacity to answer more of these contacts.
These are real life examples of what we hear every day:
• A 14-year-old girl chatted from school to get resources for her mom because her dad monitors their home computer.
• A woman who'd never heard of economic abuse decided to set up a separate bank account and leave her abusive relationship in two months after being sent resources for financial independence.
• A teenage boy called because his sister was being stalked by her ex-partner (constant texts, coming by their house uninvited, harassing phone calls). The advocate helped him to create a plan for gathering evidence to help her file for a protective order when she was ready.
Since the recent viral and traditional media exposure to the issue of domestic violence, the number of calls, texts, and chats we've received has reached record numbers with no sign of slowing down. Though the media discussion may no longer appear as front page news every day, our call, chat, and text volume shows that the impact is long lasting.
The need is still great and we rely on the support of individuals and groups to meet current and future demands. This year, 145,079 contacts went unanswered due to lack of resources. Parents, children, friends and others have reached out for help only to hear a busy tone.
Recognizing that 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men are directly impacted by this issue, our current contact volume illustrates that there are still many more people that may need our help.
"I found myself in the car, leaving town to stay with family and I picked up the phone and called The Hotline. I knew they would be there when I needed to talk and they were. What I got from talking to them on the phone that day was a level of understanding that I had never had before, a level that my friends and family couldn't provide. They understood exactly where I was and what I was going through."