Violence against women and girls is a global human rights issue, impacting one out of every three women and devastating families and communities. In the U.S., every hour, nearly 145 women are assaulted by a partner, and each day an average of three women die as a result. In addition, in the U.S.:
Yet, since it has long been considered a taboo subject, many women suffer in silence. This is where The Allstate Foundation has found its role: inspiring and empowering survivors and delivering hope where there was none to end the cycle of abuse.
Inspired by independent research indicating that access to financial resources is the number one predictor of whether a woman will break free and stay free, The Allstate Foundation has put financial empowerment at the center of its approach. The Foundation has partnered with the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV), along with other leading national and local programs, to empower women to achieve the financial self-sufficiency they need to get free and stay free from abuse.
Our work has empowered more than 215,000 survivors and their children to live stronger, happier, violence-free lives.
Since 2005, we have led profound social change in the way survivors are served by domestic violence advocates. Our work has empowered more than 215,000 survivors and their children to live stronger, happier, violence-free lives, made possible by training from more than 4,000 advocates in 1,500 local programs in nearly every state in the country. And we continue to expand this reach.
Among our many accomplishments in 2012, we are most
Because of growing interest in our efforts, we have ambitiously revised our goal and are now working to financially empower 500,000 survivors by 2015—a tenfold increase over our original goal. From financial literacy to job training to asset-building projects, Foundation-funded programs are helping survivors build stable, more secure lives.
Kathleen Taylor remembers the day she decided to fight domestic abuse. “I was reading the definition of abuse and realized it encompasses much more than physical violence,” says Taylor, who is a Muslim. “There is also verbal, religious, financial abuse.”
She soon realized there were no support resources available in her area specifically for Muslim women. “Women in the community wanted to deal with someone who understood the religion and knew that Islam does not endorse violence in any way,” says Taylor, who decided to launch her own nonprofit organization to fill this need.
With assistance from the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence Economic Empowerment Program, which receives support from The Allstate Foundation, Taylor learned how to develop a business plan and how to start a nonprofit organization.
The result is the Healthy Families Initiative (HFI). Operating under the auspices of the Rhode Island Council for Muslim Advancement, HFI is aimed at educating the Muslim community on the Islamic perspective on domestic violence. Its ultimate goal is to provide intervention programs to eradicate the occurrence of domestic abuse in the Muslim community.
Taylor credits The Allstate Foundation’s support of the Economic Empowerment Program for making HFI possible. “The program was extremely valuable,” she says. “I could not have started HFI without it.”
During Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October 2012, The Allstate Foundation filled hundreds of purple purses with domestic violence information and distributed them throughout the U.S. The Foundation then donated $10 to the YWCA USA each time a purse was passed and checked in on PurplePurse.com, and $5 each time a purse was passed online, raising $250,000 for YWCA USA and 14 YWCA associations countrywide.
The Allstate Foundation created the purple purse as a symbol for the financial empowerment of domestic violence survivors. The campaign asked consumers to “pass the purse” as a way to put the information into Americans’ hands to help break the cycle of abuse.
is designed as an online shopping magazine—abusers often track their victims' online activities—but its real purpose is to encourage people to talk openly about domestic violence and financial abuse. Since research shows that the issue of domestic violence is difficult to discuss, this site was created to make it easier to bring up the subject.
Since launching the Purple Purse campaign in 2011, The Allstate Foundation has raised $340,000 for YWCA USA.
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