Helpmate provides services to victims of domestic violence in BuncombeCounty. Helpmate is a proud onsite partner at the Buncombe County Family JusticeCenter (FJC), located at 35 Woodfin St in Asheville. Survivors of domestic abuse are welcome to walkin and access Helpmate’s services without an appointment Monday through Friday from 8am to 5pm at the FJC. Learn more about the FJC, including information on the other onsite partners and their available services.
All services are free, confidential, and provided to people of all genders. Helpmate does not discriminate based on race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, level of ability, age, sexual orientation or gender identity.
Helpmate’s hotline is accessible 24/7 for anyone affected by domestic violence. It is a dedicated line answered by staff and trained volunteer advocates.
Update May 1, 2020–Helpmate’s regular permanent shelter is no longer taking new admissions because of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, we have opened an auxiliary shelter and encourage survivors and service providers to contact our 24-Hour Hotline in order to learn more about this alternative shelter space. Since many survivors are isolated at home with abusive partners, we want to be sure that anyone in danger has a place to go in order to find safety and security.
Helpmate offers a crisis shelter for survivors who are actively fleeing intimate partner violence relationships. Once survivors are successful in seeking safety with us, they are provided with emergency food, clothing and toiletry assistance on site. In addition to meeting basic needs, survivors are also offered individualized case management designed to support residents in meeting their short-term and long-term goals.
Shelter is home to the Empowerment Group and some in-house counseling services to ensure that transportation barriers are minimized for residents. Our program also frequently collaborates with other community partners to provide free, confidential services to shelter residents such as: AIDS/HIV testing, music/art therapy, cooking classes and more.
Helpmate’s case managers help survivors enact personalized plans to create safety, stability and support in their lives. Practical issues such as housing, education, employment, transportation and childcare are addressed, and advocacy with service providers and governmental agencies is provided as needed.
Intake at the Family Justice Center
Intake Specialists meet with survivors accessing services at the Family Justice Center for the first time. They explain the various services available, help a survivor navigate the services they are interested in that day and assist with initial safety planning
Outreach and Education
Education for Allied Professionals
We offer free training for professionals who are often first responders to survivors of domestic violence. This can include healthcare providers, employers, mental health professionals, social workers, law enforcement officials, educators and many more. These allied professionals learn to recognize the signs of abuse, receive information about how to support survivors and learn how to make referrals to Helpmate’s services.
Education and awareness campaigns are essential to building communities that reject abuse. We provide outreach to faith communities through and civic groups to build a coalition of support for victims. Helpmate also provides prevention education to other groups in our community such as substance abuse recovery programs and pregnancy support groups and many more.
- Domestic Violence 101: Defining and understanding the complexities of domestic violence and how to respond appropriately
- Helpmate in Faith Communities: Trainings geared specifically for faith leaders, congregation members, and youth
- Domestic Violence in the Workplace: Helping businesses to create awareness and policies that appropriately address domestic violence in the workplace
Youth Prevention Education
Helpmate offers both single- and multi-session programming about healthy dating and dating abuse prevention to youth ages 12-18 in public and private schools, youth groups and summer camps. College workshops are available upon request and are tailored to the needs of the group.
- Dating Violence 101: A one-session curriculum teaching teens to identify abusive behaviors and cultivate healthy relationships
- Safe Dates: Helpmate offers an adaptation of Safe Dates, an evidence-based multi-session curriculum teaching teens to:
- identify red flag behaviors in friends and dating partners
- gain skills to help friends in abusive relationships
- cultivate healthy relationships through conflict resolution and empathy-informed communication
- communicate via cell phones and social media in healthy and respectful ways
- Training of Trainers: These workshops are focused on teaching educators and other youth workers about how to talk about dating abuse with teens.
- Talking with Your Teens: A workshop focused on teaching parents how to identify signs of abusive relationships and support their teens in cultivating healthy relationships.
For more information about our educational and training programs or to schedule a Helpmate presenter, please contact Christy Price, Helpmate’s Director of Outreach & Volunteer Programming at (828) 254-2968, ext. 112 or email@example.com.
Survivors of domestic violence receive free, confidential counseling from a team of licensed and license-eligible staff as well as graduate interns trained to honor the unique situation of each individual client.Survivorsare eligible for up to eight free sessions, with the possibility of additional counseling support on an as-needed basis.
Our counseling staff is trauma-informed with individual counselors trained in EMDR, CBT, DBT, ACT, Person-Centered, Psychodynamic and Grief Recovery modalities of intervention.
We currently have two full-time therapists as well as a part-time bilingual counselor (English,Spanish) and 1-3 counseling interns. To inquire about our counseling services and to schedule an intake appointment, please contact Lauren Ray, our Counseling Coordinator, at 828-254-2968 ext. 114 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Due to the high volume of inquiries about our counseling services, please allow 1-3 business days for response.
A variety of groups help meet the needs of survivors seeking peer and group support. We currently offer an Empowerment Group on Tuesday evenings, which is a survivor-directed support group facilitated by a member of our counseling staff. We also run a Latina Empowerment Group on Wednesday evenings that is tailored specifically to the needs of Spanish-speaking survivors. The counseling program also facilitates Domestic Violence Education classes every Tuesday morning. Please call our business line at 828-254-2968 or our 24-hour crisis line at 828-254-0516 for more information about how to get involved with these groups.
Helpmate supports survivors and their children. Our children’s services include:
- Support navigating cases with Child Protective Custody (CPS)
- Advocacy with Department of Social Services (DSS)
- Juvenile Court accompaniment and advocacy
- Child and Family Team (CFT) accompaniment and advocacy
- Case management services to help regain stability (housing, transportation, etc.)
- Referrals to community resources for children and survivors
- Resources and information to help survivors and their children
- Resources for resiliency
- Triple P–Positive Parenting Program
- Specialized in-shelter services for children
- Emergency Crisis Service
Helpmate’s trained Court Advocates and volunteers assist victims in both civil and criminal court systems. Victims establish plans for personal safety, gain an understanding of their legal rights, and receive assistance navigating the court process.
The LGBTQ Services Specialist does outreach to queer community in order to better understand the barriers to accessibility, conducts internal trainings to increase LGBTQ competency among staff, and supports Helpmate in shifting their model to better serve all survivors of domestic and intimate partner violence.
A few of the projects being worked on are the LGBTQIA+ Listening Tour, Internal Competency Trainings, and the Resource Zine. The Listening Tour is conducted to assess the needs of LGBTQ folks in Asheville, find out what they know about Helpmate, what they need from Helpmate, and what their experiences with DV and IPV have been. Through sitting down one on one with members of the community, we can improve our ability to serve more survivors.
Internal Competency Trainings are meant to help support Helpmate staff as they confront the issues preventing LGBTQ survivors from accessing our services, and better prepare us to ensure all survivors feel safe, heard, and welcome at Helpmate.
The Resource Zine is a response to the fact that most LGBTQIA folks turn to each other for support. The research done on DV in LGBTQ relationships shows that when survivors of this demographic seek support, they turn to friends and chosen families. Since members of this community are already doing the jobs of case managers and social workers, it is pertinent to provide them with the same resources accessible to case managers and social workers at Helpmate.