Since 1995: Baltimore's Jewish Response to Domestic
helpline has received 2000 calls. The prevailing emotion of the callers is
uncertainty. Often the first call is from a friend or family member who wants to
know what would happen if their loved one called the helpline. All callers are
given support to make their own decisions about what to do, or not do. Sometimes
callers tell us they have been thinking about what the helpline volunteer said
for a few years and now they have another question...
CHANA sponsors Rabbi
Abraham Twerski, a pioneer in domestic abuse issues in the Jewish community,
speaking with a Baltimore audience.
A Women’s Celebration of Sukkot
emphasizes the meaning of true shalom bayit.
The Kosher safehouse has
sheltered Jewish families as small as 1 and as large as 12 members. Some have
stayed for a night, others for months. Some return to their homes; many resettle
in new, safe homes in Baltimore or when necessary, covert locations in other
states and countries. One resident’s abuser told her that it was a shame that
Hitler did not kill all the Jews because that way he would never have had the
misfortune to marry her.
“The Invisible Pain of
Emotional Abuse” is sponsored as a public education forum.
A second Sukkot
Celebration is held for over 200 community members concerned about domestic
Counseling has been provided for hundreds of women by skilled
clinicians through CHANA's partnerships with Jewish Family Services and The
House of Ruth. Women who have been hit, stalked, bitten, raped and left on dark
country roads at night have been in our offices. Yet some of the most difficult
cases have been the women traumatized by the pattern of threats about what WOULD
happen if she EVER...
Shabbat CHANA is an
evening in October when congregants in over 20 synagogues in Baltimore hear a
sermon from the bima about domestic violence in Jewish homes.
for Rebbitzens is held to discuss their critical role in the community’s
response to domestic violence.
“Words Can Kill: The
Effects of Verbal Abuse on the Soul” is sponsored by CHANA. Women of Vision
event marks CHANA’s 5th Anniversary with 160 attendees at the Visionary Arts
CHANA and JFS provide training in domestic abuse issues to
Baltimore Rabbis with a grant from the Department of Health and Human
Legal representation has been provided for almost 100 women in
protective order, custody and divorce proceedings by several pro bono attorneys
and grant funded slots at the House of Ruth Legal Clinic. In one case the
abuser, a physician, quit his job in order to avoid child support. In another,
spyware was installed on the victim's computer and accessed from a remote
location so that letters to lawyers and judges were read by the abuser before
they were delivered to the recipient. In another, calls between the victim and
the CHANA staff were covertly recorded and details given to the abuser’s
A Volunteer Gathering
was held to honor and celebrate the Volunteers who assist CHANA on a daily
A new bill was introduced in the House and Senate to give victims
of domestic violence protection in the workplace.
CHANA ran several
Helpline Trainings which prepared volunteers to answer the Helpline on a weekly
A Newsletter went out monthly to report the different CHANA
events and happenings in the community.
CHANA participated in the
planning and implementing of A Women’s Department Seder at The Associated:
Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore.
Baltimore is host to
Jewish Women International’s first International Conference on domestic Abuse in
the Jewish community. CHANA staff and volunteers play a major role in the
planning and support for the conference.
A Rabbi is hired by
CHANA to further develop, market and present the Youth Curriculum, which would
be later be used with hundreds of students in religious schools, day schools,
summer camps, youth organizations, and the like.
CHANA staff, clinicians
and board members help plan, present and attend JWI’s 2nd International
Conference on Domestic Abuse in the Jewish community.
Our program staff,
advisory board, lay leaders, and volunteers participated in a protest.
also had our first Domestic Violence Awareness Month program which included
self-defense classes, provided free, for women in our local Jewish community.
CHANA hired a
Farsi-speaking advocate to assist new clients who had immigrated to the
Baltimore community. As our client caseload significantly increased, so did
CHANA’s staff with a Legal Advocate and Volunteer Coordinator, and expansion of
evening and weekend hours.
CHANA also made our voices heard in Annapolis
before the Maryland State Senate and House of Representatives for the “Get Bill”
JWI looked to CHANA as a supporting partner for the JWI 3rd
Conference on Domestic Abuse in the Jewish Community. The CHANA and House of
Ruth staff presented at the most well-attended experiential workshop of the
conference: “Mothers and Daughters.”
Held at Clinch Fight and Fitness,
we began an annual National Stalking Awareness program consisting of
self-defense classes and statistic scavenger hunt.
CHANA celebrated her
13th Anniversary with a Bat-Mitzvah reception at Chizuk Amuno Congregation. We
opened the night with our newly released video presentation. Followed by
HaZamir, who performed beautifully, as did “Bump in the Road Theater” with an
outstanding performance based on past and present CHANA clients’ stories. And
ending with a meaningful Candlelighting ceremony. The Pocketbook Project turned
out hundreds of pocketbooks for clients, cellphone donations were accepted, and
new purple t-shirts were sold.
CHANA “went to camp” at Camp Louise and
other Jewish camps in the area to complete an ambiguous questionnaire and
program about myths and facts to educate and prevent teen dating violence.
Over 2000 Helpline calls
Partnership with The Shofar Coalition, Collaborative Response
to Childhood Trauma in the Baltimore Jewish Community.
CHANA will offer a Volunteer Workshop. You can learn all about CHANA and how to work on our helpline, advocate for victims of domestic violence, help with our Youth Curriculum, donate cellphones, write newsletter articles, deliver kosher groceries to a woman and/or her children in the safehouse, transport a client to/from an appointment and many other opportunities.
For more information about volunteering for CHANA, contact Ellen Fox at email@example.com or call 410-234-0030.
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local hotline, and/or call the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
410-234-0023 M + Th, 8:30 a.m. - 8:30 p.m. T + W +
F, 8:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.