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Paula Lucas, a previous R.O.S.E. Award Recipient, recently spoke in Boston to share the story of her journey to success and happiness.  Now, we would like to share her story with our friends and family.

866uswomen.org

Paula Lucas attended school in California. Shortly thereafter, she fell in love with and married a Pakistani refugee who was working as a photographic journalist.  After a few years, the couple moved to the United Arab Emirates, when Paula’s husband gained United States citizenship.  Together, they had three sons and founded their own advertising agency.

To the objective eye, Paula and her husband seemed to be living the dream: They were very successful, traveled in private planes, owned a beautiful home and enjoyed expensive meals out.  However, in reality, Paula had little, if any control over her life and home.

In the United Arab Emirates, men have long been the highest-respected citizens and direct the household. Paula’s rights were in the hands of her husband: She did not have access to her own passport or those of her children, nor did she ever experience what American women would consider “common freedom.”  Almost inevitably, Paula’s husband became abusive, not only toward her, but also their oldest son and Indonesian housekeeper.

Paula’s husband traveled a great amount for work.  At one point, he was detained in Germany after being robbed of his passport and money, granting Paula an opportunity to escape.  After she found all the passports that had been missing, she woke her children very late one night under the guise that they were going camping. With one suitcase and three children in tow, she boarded a plane for New York, followed by another bound for Oregon, where he sister lived.

Paula arrived in Oregon in 1999, after which she experienced many years filled with battles over divorce processes, child support and stalking.  Eventually, the divorce was finalized and Paula won custody of her three children, but was not granted child support.

In December of 1999, Paula launched the Americans Overseas Domestic Violence Crisis Center, along with an accompanying Web site and hotline: http://www.866uswomen.org. She founded the organization with the mission to provide a resource for domestic violence victims living abroad to find advice, services and general assistance.  Until 2003, Paula operated the company out of her living room.

That year, Paula received the R.O,S.E. Fund’s esteemed R.O.S.E. Award after she was nominated by her sister.   Prior to the occasion, she had not applied for any awards or grants, nor did she engage in a great deal of public speaking.  However, the R.O.S.E. Award not only allowed her to move the Americans Overseas Domestic Violence Crisis Center into an established office, but also helped the organization earn significantly more recognition.

Since then, the Crisis Center has grown exponentially, thanks largely in part to the award, word-of-mouth marketing and the help of an investor from Switzerland.  Today, the organization has a staff of five and the right to provide legal and counseling services, as well as a 24/7 hotline.  Additionally, the Crisis Center has formed a partnership with Virgin Atlantic Airlines to provide free flights to women with family and household emergencies similar to Paula’s.

Paula has attributed her company’s success to the R.O.S.E. Fund, crediting it as “the help I needed.”  She recently launched a worldwide awareness campaign on behalf of the hotline, for which she has been traveling globally and meeting with organizations, embassies and others who can inform the world of the services provided by the Crisis Center.

Contact:

Amanda Zantal-Wiener

azantalwiener@gmail.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


The R.O.S.E. Fund Chairman Dan Walsh to be Recognized as a Jane Doe Inc. White Ribbon Day Ambassador

Advocacy programs partner to speak out against domestic violence

WAKEFIELD, MA – March 1, 2010 – The R.O.S.E. Fund (www.rosefund.org) chairman Dan Walsh will be recognized tomorrow by domestic violence and sexual assault prevention organization Jane Doe Inc. (www.janedoe.org) as a White Ribbon Ambassador during a ceremony at the Massachusetts State House.

The ceremony honors the 3rd Annual Massachusetts White Ribbon Day, part of the Men’s Initiative for Jane Doe (MIJD) to raise awareness and participation in anti-violence efforts among men and boys.  Walsh has been a longtime advocate of domestic violence survivors, primarily through the R.O.S.E. Fund, where he leads efforts to help women regain their self-esteem after harrowing episodes of violence.

“I am thrilled and greatly humbled to be a part of this ceremony and what it represents,” says Walsh.  “By becoming a White Ribbon Ambassador, I hope to give a louder voice to both those who have had the strength to break the cycle of domestic violence and victims who are too afraid to speak out.”

The 3rd Annual White Ribbon Day celebration will take place Tuesday, March 2, in the State House Gardner Auditorium at 1:00 P.M.  For more information regarding this event and others related to the White Ribbon Campaign, please visit http://www.janedoe.org/whiteribbonday.

About Jane Doe Inc.

Jane Doe Inc. (JDI), The Massachusetts Coalition Against Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence, brings together organizations and people committed to ending domestic violence and sexual assault.  The organization creates social change by addressing the root causes of this violence and by promoting justice, safety and healing for survivors.  JDI advocates for responsive public policy, promotes collaboration, raises public awareness and supports member organizations to provide comprehensive prevention and intervention services.

About the R.O.S.E. Fund

The R.O.S.E. (Regaining One’s Self-Esteem) Fund was established in 1992 as an umbrella organization chartered to raise funds for and awareness of women who have had the extraordinary strength and courage to break the cycle of domestic violence. Through the dedication of staff and volunteers, the leadership of the board and with the unwavering support of sponsors, The R.O.S.E. Fund has been transforming and profoundly improving the lives of women survivors ever since.

The R.O.S.E Fund is recognized in the greater Boston community, as well as the nation, as a leader in the movement to end violence against women. Increasing the self-esteem of the population of women we serve is the thread that runs through all of the organization’s efforts and programs.

Visit The R.O.S.E. Fund online at:

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Happy Valentine’s Day from The ROSE Fund!

We’ve just put the finishing touches on a very successful 2009 and we wanted to share a brief operational update and a touching love story from one of our ROSE recipients.

As a brief update on your prior investments in The ROSE Fund and the female survivors we serve, in 2009 for every $1 of expense we incurred more than $2 of value was delivered to these courageous women in the form of much needed reconstructive medical services and scholarship monies!

This has been achieved in large part due to the generosity of our medical partners and the tireless efforts of our staff (of 1) and volunteers (many).

As a result of the growth and strength of our expanding network of medical providers, our 2010 plan projects that we will be able to deliver more than 300 units of medical service (i.e. a medical, surgical or dental procedure).  Based on that, for every $1 of expense we incur in 2010 more than $4 of medical services will be delivered to a female survivor of domestic violence who could otherwise not afford to erase the phsical reminders of her abusive past.

With your help, we will continue to help these brave women to re-build their lives and regain their self-esteem.

Thank you for all your support and Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at The ROSE Fund.

Below is a simple love story from a recent ROSE recipient ….

February 14th 2010 is sure to be another day full of fulfillment, love and laughter for ROSE recipient Mary Mandolin*.  But this wasn’t always the case for this proud mother living just north of Boston.  In fact for more than 10 years that was far from the case as she lived through an abusive relationship.  In Mary’s* own words…

“He gave me black eyes so that I had to stay home or else wear sunglasses when I left the house.  He broke my nose. He would call me unspeakable names. It was an every six weeks cycle.  He was always saying it would never happen again.  I would forgive him.  Six weeks later it would happen all over again.

Along the way I became a changed person. I believed it when he told me that nobody else would want me, that I was an unattractive loser. I also believed I loved him.  I handed myself over to him completely and lost myself in the process.

I stayed and I stayed and I stayed. I stayed because Christmas was coming. I stayed because the kids needed school clothes.  I stayed because we had bills to pay.  Before I knew it, ten or fifteen years were gone.  Finally an inner voice, the real me buried deep inside, said: “You’ve got to get out.” And finally I did get out. And it was like a whole new world, a wonderful world.

Therapy saved my life.  It taught me the basics all over again: what’s right and what’s wrong, how to love and appreciate myself.  Every day I do something nice for myself.  Can you believe it — I didn’t even know what my favorite color was – what color blouse or dress I liked.  I would only dress for him, for what he liked.

My therapist told me about the ROSE Fund and the work they do to help survivors like me erase the physical reminders of our abusive past.  Soon thereafter I was at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary meeting with Dr Jaimie DeRosa.  I shared with her how with every glance in a mirror I saw myself disfigured. How the horror of the attacks would come back, and of the humiliation I suffered. She was so nice.  She comforted me and said that she had seen worse and that she and her staff were going to take great care of me.  You have no idea what that was like to hear.

After the surgery, when she took the bandages off my nose, I couldn’t stop crying.  For the first time in many years I could see the real me.  Now I wake up every morning, brush my teeth and I say out loud, “Well, good morning, Sunshine!”

With that surgery, everything feels new again.  I can’t say enough about The R.O.S.E. Fund. It saved my life.  My kids have seen the dramatic change in me.  I look like and I feel like the woman I’m supposed to be.  I can go out of the house. I can look people in the eye and I can smile.

To victims who haven’t yet broken the cycle, I can completely understand.  You think it’s love but it’s not love.  You have to love yourself more than that.  You can change your life. It’s about letting go, starting over and learning to love yourself again.  I have, and it’s truly wonderful.

By the way, I think I look great in purple.  As it turns out, it’s my favorite color.

To those who continue to support ROSE, thank you so much for what you have given me and my family and Happy Valentine’s Day!”

* Name has been changed to ensure the safety and privacy of our recipient

Cheers to Love, in all its forms!
Happy Valentine’s Day!
Thanks for your continued support!

Have a Heart this Valentine’s Day and donate to help other victims of domestic violence love themselves first.

DONATE NOW!

Hello there, 2010. A new year, a new decade. What are your resolutions?

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We’ve heard a lot of people say that they’ve resolved to help others and we couldn’t be more thrilled. To help you get a leg-up on your resolution, we’re letting you know that the R.O.S.E. Fund is always accepting donations…no matter how small the amount.

Of course, we accept other forms of support.  You can help by recruiting your friends to our Cause, or by asking them to make a donation if you cannot afford to do so yourself.

We’re on Facebook and Twitter, too.  Let’s be friends!

Volunteers are always welcome.  For more information on how you can lend time to the R.O.S.E. Fund, visit our Web site.

Or, if you’d just like to know what we’re up to, sign up for our newsletter.

Thank you for all those who contributed in 2009. We hope you’re all as excited as we are for what 2010 beholds!

Best wishes,

The R.O.S.E. Fund team

To our supporters:

Thank you for the priceless gifts you have given.

Your continued support of the R.O.S.E. Fund has helped many female survivors of domestic violence receive priceless gifts this year.

Holidays are a time for family and friends to get together and celebrate.   While it seems natural to go home, attend family functions or even travel to see our loved ones, many women who have been a victim of domestic violence have lasting scars or cracked teeth that prevent them from wanting to show their faces around the holidays.  It reminds them of what they went through and it is too painful to explain this to even the closest of family members.

Your support not only helps these women rejoice this holiday season, but it also lets them re-connect with their friends and family with a new sense of self-esteem.

This year alone dozens of women have received more than a hundred medical services associated with dental and facial reconstructive surgeries.  Many have completed the process and countless others are still receiving treatment.  What a priceless gift!

‘All I want for Christmas is my Two Front Teeth’


Year round, the R.O.S.E. Fund receives innumerable requests for medical and dental services that will help these survivors erase the physical reminders of their abusive past.

For Christmas 2009, the big gift on Sharon’s list was “her two front teeth”.  In 2008, Sharon was disfigured by her abuser, resulting in numerous head and neck injuries including getting her teeth knocked out.  Sharon overcame the cycle of domestic violence by recognizing that if she did not leave, she might end up like her close friend, who was killed by her abuser.  As a mother and soon to be grandmother, she called for help.

She entered into a transitional living program and eventually went to a dentist who, based on her condition, had to pull out the rest of her teeth.  She was then directed to other dental specialists for additional care but she did not have the financial means to remedy this uncomfortable and upsetting injury.  Sharon was left without teeth, in pain and unable to chew or eat properly.

With the help of the R.O.S.E. Fund, Dr. Corbett, who is a participating R.O.S.E. dentist, was able to give Sharon the treatment she needed to include a complete set of dentures.  Dr. Corbett and his dedicated staff gave Sharon her smile back, going so far as to keep his office open on Dec 22nd to meet the Christmas deadline.  Sharon is thankful for your gifts this year and for Dr. Corbett and his staff’s dedication and compassion.

“Dr. Corbett’s staff is wonderful!  They are very kind and I have had a number of pleasant experiences with them.  They always go overboard.”

In Sharon’s words; “After I get my teeth I will walk with my head up and smile a lot.  I will have more confidence when I go for job interviews.  More than ever, I would like to be able to speak to other female survivors of domestic violence and let them know there is a light at the end of all the madness.  Just keep the faith.”


Keeping the Faith


At the R.O.S.E. Fund, from survivors to supporters, we are keeping the faith this holiday season.  Our hope is to continue to provide the light at the end of the madness for the many other applicants in need of our services.

Below is a partial list of current R.O.S.E. applicants who are in a similar state of need as Sharon was before her treatments.  With them we are keeping the faith, in waiting for their  ‘two front teeth’ to regain their smiles, to build their self-esteem and to celebrate for the holiday:

Lizbet, CA – broken teeth
Ruth, MA – 2 front teeth missing
Frieda, MA – all teeth missing
Maria, MA – missing front teeth
Lydia, MA – broken, missing teeth
Carrie, MA – broken teeth
Renee, NJ – missing and loose teeth
Angel, NM – cracked front tooth

‘Tis the season of giving.  We hope that you enjoy spending time this holiday season with your friends and family, and we hope that you continue to help R.O.S.E. Fund recipients reconnect with theirs.

Donate Now!


Have a happy, healthy and safe holiday this year!

Sincerely,

Dan Walsh, Chairman
The R.O.S.E. Fund

Your help matters

We are sad to see that our donation number still reads “$0 contributed” … especially right before the holidays.

With the festive season is among us, please try to remember those who are less fortunate; not only those who cannot afford to celebrate in the same way as the rest of us, but also those who have a haunting past impeding their cheer.

We implore you to please make any donation possible – even an amount as small as $5 can make a huge difference.

To find out how to donate, please visit our Cause.  Read some of our survivors’ stories below to learn more about the impact of previous donations.

As we thank you and wish you a happy holiday season, we ask you to please help make it happier for others.

~The R.O.S.E. Fund Family~

Happy Thanksgiving!
At the ROSE Fund, we have a lot to be thankful for and we wanted to extend our deepest gratitude to all of you during the holiday season.
We’re incredibly thankful for:
Our doctors and their staff for their compassion, talents and time
Our donors for their generosity, contributions and support
Our partners in the domestic violence community for their dedication, compassion and commitment
Our ROSE recipients for their strength, courage and resolve
Our volunteers for their passion, efforts and energy.  Each and everyone one of you play a role in inspiring us to continue our mission to break the silence and the cycle of domestic violence.  And, you play an integral role in enabling ROSE to help women survivors of domestic violence to rebuild their lives and regain their self esteem.
For that, we are very thankful
.
Below are excerpts from a few recent ROSE recipients who, based on the collective efforts of ROSE Fund supporters, have a lot to be thankful for during this holiday season.

 

Theresa B*, a mother of 2 boys living in a Boston suburb

 

“I’m thankful for the new perspective I have on life….now that the physical scars have been removed, I realize that there is a whole world waiting out there beyond the abuse.  I’m thankful to be excited about the future and the possibilities ahead for me and my boys!!  Thank you ROSE Fund supporters for all that you do for those of us who desperately need your help”

Susan P*, a Boston based mother who with ROSE Fund help, graduated with a nursing degree in her 50’s!!

 

“I’m thankful to have my life and my self-esteem back.   I’m thankful to know that after all I’ve been through, that there are people out there that really care about others.  I’m thankful for those who encouraged me to fill out the ROSE application.   You have no idea what it feels like, when you really need help and the person on the other end says, “We’re going to help you”…it’s like a miracle…words can’t describe what that does to a person’s every day outlook on life…..I’m thrilled and thankful that I have my degree….it was like coming full circle, from abuse back  to LIFE!”

Ruth W* a mother from the south shore of Boston…”

 

“I’m thankful to have my smile back…and for the self-confidence to smile and laugh without covering my mouth…..it’s such a simple joy that’s easy to take for granted until it’s gone.  Thank you ROSE Fund supporters for helping me to get it back!!”

Annie C.* the mother of a newborn baby who lives west of Boston

 

“I’m thankful for the self-confidence I have now that the scars are gone, and my teeth have been fixed.  I’m happy I can get back to a life I’m proud of…where I can return to the work force and start seeing my family again.  .  I’m thankful for being able to truly move forward without the constant reminders of my past.  I’m thankful I got to know you people.  I will never forget what you did for me!!”

Mary M*  the mother of a daughter in college

 

“I’m thankful that I finally had my teeth fixed.  Now I can bite and eat normally.  You have no idea what a relief it is.  Not only is the pain gone.  Now I don’t think about the violence I suffered every time I chew.  I think about the future.  I think about enjoying life.  I actually enjoy eating again.  Thank you ROSE Fund supporters for all that you have done for me.”

*Names have been changed to ensure the privacy and safety of our recipients

 

Thanks again for your generosity and support.  Have a happy and peaceful Thanksgiving.
Sincerely,

Dan Walsh
Chairman and Executive Director

 

 

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flickr.com

Each year, the R.O.S.E. Fund receives numerous applications for our awards. These applicants tell stories that are, at once, poignant, heartbreaking and awe-inspiring.

The stories we hear from these remarkable women are constant reminders of the tremendous support we receive from our donors and volunteers. Because of this continued support, we are able, proud and extremely humbled to announce the 2009 recipient of the R.O.S.E. Fund Award; a woman of extraordinary spirit and strength of character: Nadine Walker Mooney.

Nadine’s story greatly moved and encouraged all of us at the R.O.S.E. Fund; now, we would like to share some excerpts from her incredible story of transforming from a victim of brutal abuse to the epitome of an astonishingly courageous survivor.

“In spite of our mutual reason for coming together, I am happy that the R.O.S.E. Fund has made it possible for the opportunity to connect with all of you. I am certain that the sharing of our respective stories will ease some of our pain. In addition, I am hopeful that our stories will empower our lives for the better.

My new life is more challenging than anything I have dealt with. I am legally blind. I have been this way since March 20, 2006. On that day, I became the victim of an attempted murder/ suicide.

I was involved in a relationship that I tried to end. He would not let me. What he did to me then, to him[self] and our families, was horrific, sad and completely unnecessary. I made every effort to end the relationship in an amicable manner. But, he was very possessive, obsessive and destructive.

Knowledge of these things prompted me to put a quick end to this relationship. I was faced with the fear that he might kill himself and take me with him. In the end, my fears were confirmed. That is exactly what he tried to do, on that fateful morning in March. I survived. He did not.

Besides losing my vision, my hearing has been somewhat reduced. The doctors expected me to have very little hearing left. But, because I took such good care of my health and body, I was able to make what the doctors called “an amazing recovery.” I no longer have any sense of smell and my taste buds have been drastically reduced. I have just enough to enjoy the food I eat. Thank God for that.

But, I can walk and talk and think and move and hug and kiss and smile and breathe and dance and sing and so much more.

My children are grown. I have four: three girls and a son. They are wonderful and productive and strong and kind and loving and intelligent. Three of them have children; I have six grandchildren: Five girls and one boy. They are all incredibly funny, smart and beautiful. [They] could not have asked for better parents.

Prior to the ‘incident’ that left me blind, life was good. I had a wonderful career as a medical skincare professional. I had a nice apartment in Boston’s upscale South End. I had an active social life and lots of fun times. I was applying to Northeastern University for a degree as a Physician Assistant. This is one level below an M.D. My new ambitions were to work in the operating room of one of Boston’s top hospitals, specializing in plastic surgery.

These dreams have come to a screeching halt.

This relationship was a short one. We had been together for only eleven months. On a Monday night, April 18, 2005, the man who would forever change the direction of my life walked through the door of a Boston jazz club I often frequented. Ron approached me and started up a conversation. He was physically attractive. I found him somewhat interesting, funny and sure of himself. Before I left, he asked for my phone number. I took his but did not give him mine. When I finally called him, he was more than ready to see me again. During our first date, he told me that if I had not called him, he would have returned to the club, every Monday night, until he saw me again. In hindsight, I should have suspected certain things about his character that could be a problem. But, I did not. Like most women, I was flattered by his admission.

Our relationship started [well]. He was very considerate, funny and very protective of me. But, by the eighth month, things rapidly began to change. He started showing parts of his character that were going to be a problem: he became easily angered, very jealous and hit and hurt me on two different occasions as a result of his own insecurities. He was likely an alcoholic. His bouts with depression returned after I told him I wanted to end our relationship. Then, he became threatening and began stalking me when I refused to see him. By now, though, it would be too late to get out of this unscathed. Making matters worst, he practically lived at my place. I made the terrible mistake of giving him a key to my apartment. In the end, I had to change the locks on the main hallway and my apartment doors. As a result, I also had to pay for eight additional hallway keys made for the other tenants in my building. Consequently, my landlord threatened to evict me if he was seen visiting me. I was OK with that. This threat of eviction would allow me to tell him, in the hope that this would make him stay away.

But, neither the changing of the locks, nor the threat of eviction, kept him away. He told me that a restraining order would not keep him away, either. He admitted to having received those in the past. So, rather than staying away, he began stalking me in the mornings, on my way to catch the train for work.

It was on one of those mornings when he attacked me. It was shortly after I left my home for work, between 6:10 and 6:15 in the morning.

Through God’s mercy, I have no recollection of the attack. But, what I do know is that his possessive, obsessive and jealous personality would not allow him to let me find happiness elsewhere.

I awoke one day in Boston Medical Center to the sound of familiar voices of family members, engaged in conversation with each other. I had no idea where I was, or what had happened. I knew that whatever was wrong with me, he had done it.

Upon awakening, I saw only blackness. Then, I raised my hand to touch my face. My eyes were covered with heavy gauze bandages. I found a long stitched incision along the left side of my jaw. My mouth was wired shut. I discovered later that my right eye had been reconstructed then stitched shut; I no longer had an eyeball in there. I ran my hand over my head to discover that most of my hair had been shaved off. I had metal staples running across my head, from one ear to the other. This incision was done so that, whenever the surgeons had to perform another surgery, they could cut and fold down the skin from this scalp incision while unfolding the skin down over my face. This surgical approach would avoid leaving scars over the surface of my face, and saved me from looking like Frankenstein’s daughter.

These very skilled doctors did an incredible job of putting me back together. My daughters made sure of that by providing them with photos of me, before the ‘incident.’

Beyond my obvious physical scars, I had the emotional ones to deal with. I will never see again. I will never be able to look upon the faces of my children or grandchildren, my mother or that I know and love. I will never see the sunrise or set. I will never smell the aromas of life or of nature. I will never again see or smell those things in life that we take for granted. Instead, I live and move in total darkness all day every day. No matter where I go or what I do, I will see only darkness and smell nothing. My hearing has been reduced, in part, to the constant non-stop sound of electrical currents that I hear. Cover your own ears and you will hear what I hear, all day everyday. Except, I hear it louder.

I began a residential program at the Carroll Center for the Blind, where I lived for three months. Here, I received training in independent living: how to cook, clean my home, use a talking computer, mobility training with a cane, iron and use a washing machine and dryer, use of a vacuum cleaner, etc. One-on-one counseling services were also part of my training in independent living, as well as one class per week of group counseling. We lived in a mansion that had been converted into a dormitory. Upon completion of this program, I returned to Boston Medical Center for my final major facial surgery.

I began seeing a therapist once a week. Now, I attend my sessions only once or twice a month, as needed. I have never taken medication for depression, and hope I never will need to.

In March of 2007, I moved into my new apartment. Thanks to my training at the Carroll Center for the Blind, I am able to live alone. It is easier that way. I do not have to worry about anyone leaving shoes or things on the floor for me to fall over, or, things on or near the stove for me to set on fire. I no longer have any sense of smell; by the time the smoke detectors go off, the house could be engulfed in fire.

Due to the loss of my vision, I am currently living on social security disability income. I must be retrained in another field before I can hope to find a job. In this current recession, with so many skilled workers unemployed, I have no idea when I’ll be able to return to work. But, rather than worry about it, I am making plans to attend school for a degree in political law and advocacy. I am planning on a career in public policy, researching different degree and certificate programs offered at local universities and colleges. My goal is to become a political advocate, in order to help change or create laws / policies that help battered women, the disabled and the elderly.

I’m interested in training as a motivational speaker in order to inspire others to control the destiny and outcomes of their lives. I am currently engaged in talks with various women’s centers and organizations for speaking assignments, as well as other volunteer opportunities that will be helpful to many.

I do not want this tragic thing that has happened to me to be swept under the rug. I want to turn this tragedy into a triumph for helping others avoid, or get away from abuse in their lives.”

Happy Labor Day Weekend from The R.O.S.E. Fund (Regaining One’s Self Esteem)

Hello,

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thepresidiomotel.com

I wanted to wish all of you a happy and safe Labor Day weekend and provide you with a brief update on how your continued support of The R.O.S.E. Fund continues to profoundly improve the lives of women survivors of domestic violence.  Since our last email, earlier this summer, a number of R.O.S.E. recipients have returned to the labor force and a few others are about to launch new careers as recent graduates of colleges, nursing programs and law schools.

The thread that runs through all of the R.O.S.E. programs is helping women to regain their self-esteem.  Some of these women have returned to the labor force based on the new skills they developed on a R.O.S.E. scholarship. Others had already earned their degrees and had good careers but hadn’t been working because of the mental and physical effects of an abusive relationship.  They didn’t have the courage or the confidence to get a job, or even an interview, because of unsightly facial scars, disfigurements and/or missing and cracked teeth.

Through the strength and generosity of the R.O.S.E. network of dentists and doctors, these women have taken critical steps towards rebuilding their lives and renewing their self-esteem.  Not only have these participating doctors erased scars and given these women beautiful smiles; they’ve given them a reason to smile.  These successful medical outcomes provide these women with not only a refreshed outlook, but also the self-esteem and self-confidence they need to effectively interview and secure a good job.  With your support, these courageous women have been able to rebuild their lives, return to the workforce and increase their financial independence.

A couple of recent R.O.S.E. recipients (S.R*.is a R.O.S.E. Scholar and R.D.* is a R.O.S.E. Award Winner) have recently graduated from law school, taken the bar exam and are excited to launch their legal careers.   Both are committed to dedicating a portion of their time to serve as legal advocates for other women survivors of domestic violence.  Other past R.O.S.E. recipients (Scholars, Award Winners and Reconstructive Surgery Recipients) recently shared with us how they are bringing more women into the labor force as they are growing their organizations (M.C.* owns a beauty salon north of Boston, and M.L*. just opened her third domestic violence shelter this summer in the southwest). They credit the support they received from R.O.S.E. as having played a significant role in enabling them to start and grow their organizations that are focused on the safety and self-esteem of women.

Perhaps the sentiments of these women are best captured in the words of a 53 year old mother E.K.* who, with R.O.S.E. support, continues to advance her nursing career:

“With help and support from R.O.S.E., I found and used the keys to free myself.   The best thing is that I have a career that I want, a career that I’m excited about and one where I can make a real difference in people’s lives.   I do not believe in revenge as a rule.  But having my independence and my financial freedom is truly the best feeling in the world, and the sweetest form of vindication.  I can’t thank you enough for what you’ve given me.  You’ve given me back my life.”

yhen1027.wordpress.com

yhen1027.wordpress.com

Your hard work, generosity and ongoing support of R.O.S.E. enables us to invest in these women, their families (80% of R.O.S.E. recipients are mothers) and their futures; investments that continue to pay forward rich and rewarding dividends. With your support, the cycle of violence is being replaced with a cycle of empowerment, with women helping women.

Thanks again for your support and helping us to achieve all of the above.  Enjoy a safe and happy holiday weekend.  I look forward to seeing you soon at the 2009 Annual R.O.S.E. Awards Gala on Tuesday night, October the 13th at Boston’s Fairmont Copley Hotel.

Sincerely,

Dan

Daniel J. Walsh
Chairman and Executive Director
The R.O.S.E. Fund
http://www.R.O.S.E.fund.org

Launched in 2009, the R.O.S.E. Fund Research and Report Card Program is focused on researching domestic violence (DV) best-practices and simplifying them to create an actionable set of tools.  The program allows concerned citizens to play a role in breaking the silence and the cycle of DV in their local communities with a scorecard of three critical questions:

  • What’s the specific impact of DV in my home town?
  • How capable is my home town of dealing with this issue?
  • What can and should I do about it?
Image courtesy of am.dodea.edu

Image courtesy of am.dodea.edu

These questions allow individuals to conduct a ‘Community Impact Analysis,’ enabling them to assess and better understand the impact of DV in their respective communities.  These questions create the ability to benchmark and compare how effectively communities leverage best-practices around DV awareness, education, intervention and prevention.

Lastly, the program provides a keen sense, or “roadmap,” of methods to improve a community’s response to DV.

The R.O.S.E. Fund Research and Report Card has been developed in conjunction with volunteers and advisors known for their expertise in what successfully increases DV prevention.  Theprogram promises to accelerate the pace at which we break both the silence and the cycle of DV in our communities.