This Christmas there are families living in Shine's refuge, where they have come to be safe from a violent partner. They need you.
My name is Sarah. My daughter, Bella, and I escaped from my violent husband to the safety of Shine's refuge.
I’ve never appreciated a room and a bed so much in my life. The house was huge, made of concrete and you had to enter a pin at the door. My daughter loved it, she called it a castle.
In the initial period, we couldn’t hold down any food, my teeth were chattering, Bella had broken out in a rash that covered her whole body, we both had mouth ulcers, and we were just broken.
Bella and I spent Christmas in the Shine refuge. That was the hardest time of all. But the refuge staff picked up a real tree, which Bella and I decorated. In the past, Christmas had always been so stressful, with increased episodes of violence. This was the first Christmas that I didn’t have to worry about what my husband was going to do to ruin our day."
My experience has shown me that my situation wasn't unique, and I know that this Christmas, there are families, just like mine, spending Christmas in Shine’s refuge.
Running such a huge home, with many families filling the rooms is very expensive. And it’s the people like me, and now you, who understand the need and the value in the service they are providing.
I know that some of the wonderful Shine staff won’t be having a holiday and will be working long hours. Because domestic violence doesn’t stop at Christmas - it increases. One day, when I’m stronger, I’m going to do what I can to help families who are struggling with domestic violence.
But for now, I have $30 which I’m giving to Shine’s refuge.
Please will you join with me, and give what you can to support the families in Shine’s refuge this Christmas?
Thank you so much,
*Names have been changed to protect privacy
Sarah Jackson - I was a Shine client, who lived in refuge for 6 months.
Shine is NZ's largest specialist domestic abuse charity.
We provide a range of services working with the both the victims and the perpetrators of domestic abuse.
For more information, see: http://www.2shine.org.nz