Getting Help2018-07-17T15:52:23+00:00

What is Domestic Violence?

Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behavior used to establish power and control over another person through fear and intimidation, often including the threat or use of violence. Domestic violence can include physical, emotional, psychological, economic, and/or sexual abuse. Abusers use threats, intimidation, isolation, and other behaviors to gain and maintain power over their victims.

Domestic violence can affect anyone, regardless of income, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or religion. One in four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime. Domestic violence occurs in same-sex relationships, and men can be victims as well.

What are Some Signs of Domestic Violence?
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, domestic violence may include:

  • Physical abuse such as slapping, kicking, hitting, shoving, or other physical force.
  • Sexual abuse including rape, sexual assault, forced prostitution, or interfering with birth control.
  • Emotional abuse such as shouting, name-calling, humiliation, constant criticism, or harming the victim’s relationship with her or his children.
  • Psychological abuse including threats to harm the victims’ family, friends, children, co-workers, or pets, isolation, mind games, destruction of victims’ property, or stalking.
  • Economic abuse such as controlling the victim’s money, withholding money for basic needs, interfering with school or job, or damaging the victim’s credit.

Several or all of the above forms of violence and abuse may take place.

Sources: U.S. Department of Justice, Office on Violence against Women, What is Domestic Violence?

  • Are You in an Abusive Relationship?
  • Are you ever afraid of your partner?
  • Does your partner threaten to hurt you?
  • Does your partner control all the money?
  • Has your partner ever pushed you or shoved you, thrown things at you, or forced you to have sex?
  • Does your partner stalk you or show up uninvited at your job or when you’re out with friends?

If you said yes to one or more of these questions, you may be a victim of domestic violence. You are not alone, and help is available. The Shade Tree is open 24-hours a day, seven days a week.

Calls For Help in 2014
Women Experience Stalking
Abuse Victems Annually
Hour Accessible Shelter
Permenant Beds
New Families Assisted Daily
Diapers Provided Last Year

Who We Help

The Shade Tree is open to any woman, with or without children, and male and female unaccompanied youth who lack a safe, adequate place to live.

We provided victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, elder abuse, human trafficking, as well as homeless youth and families, the tools and resources they need to assist with recovery and healing.

We help the women pick up the pieces and guide them on their path to self-sufficiency.

Black/African American
Have At Least 1 Minor Child
Homeless Victims of Domestic Violence

Homelessness Knows No Boundaries

Women are sad and fearful when they first come to The Shade Tree. Family and friends sometimes bring women and children to the shelter when they can no longer care for them. Some women and children are brought to the shelter by our Metro Police. Local doctors, nurses, and hospitals refer people to The Shade Tree. Other social service agencies and churches refer women and children to us. Sometimes they just come in off the streets.

It does not matter how they come to us; we care for them all. We provide services for homeless and abused women and children, victims of domestic violence, victims of street violence or gang violence, victims of elder abuse, the physically and mentally disabled, female veterans, the working poor and homeless youth.

Our residents represent all ages, races, ethnic groups and educational levels. No one is immune. During our last fiscal year, we sheltered 5,754 individuals (the most in our 24-year history).  The list to the left shows a break down of the numbers.


Stories of Healing

Donate now to help keep our families safe from homelessness and abuse.

“My first day at The Shade Tree I couldn’t stop crying. I could not believe I was there; that my life had come to this. Less than a year later, I moved into my new apartment. I cried that day too when I saw the look on my son’s face when he saw his room for the first time.”

Peggy, Former client of The Shade Tree

“When I came to the shelter I was what they refer to as a ‘victim of elder abuse’. My own children had been exploiting my Social Security check, and barely left me with enough for food and housing. After 10 days in the Transitional Shelter Program, I was placed in an assisted living facility, which provided meals, my own living space, and wonderful new friends.”

Susan, age 87

“As a single mom with a 13-year old daughter, I didn’t have much choice about leaving my abusive husband. I went to The Shade Tree in the hope of finding a fresh start and brighter future. Thanks to the Job Development Program, I quickly found a new job. Through the Victim Services Center, I received education and support. With the help from the Children’s Activity Center, I grew closer to my ‘little girl’. Soon I was promoted and able to afford an apartment. We moved out of the shelter with $2,000 in a saving account.”

Amy, age 52
Barriers To Leaving
Safety Plan


Volunteers have an important role in contributing to the mission of The Shade Tree. By giving generously of your time and talents, you are a vital member of the team making a difference in the lives of the women, children, and pets we serve.