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Community Spotlight: First Step

The nonprofit provides free services to survivors of domestic violence.
Community Spotlight: First Step
Published: Sep. 27, 2021 at 6:28 AM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - For more than 40 years, First Step, A Response to Domestic Violence has offered free services and a safe space for survivors.

“We are the place, that if there is a survivor of domestic violence, somebody who is in danger because of domestic violence, we are the place that they can contact,” says Candy Phillips, the Executive Director of First Step.

At First Step, staff members work around the clock, answering their hotline and helping survivors of domestic violence get back on their feet.

“We need to be that access,” says Phillips. “Not only for survivors, but the police department or Sheriff’s Department. If they respond to a situation and need to get a survivor to a safe place to go, they can contact us.”

First Step has a ton of free and confidential services, including a hotline, advocates assisting survivors with anything they need, temporary housing and rental assistance, a food pantry, and counseling services.

“Sometimes survivors come to us with nothing,” says Phillips. “They come with just the clothes on their back, their kids by their sides.”

As a nonprofit, monetary donations are always welcome. They could also use donations of cleaning supplies, basic household needs, personal supplies, and more.

You can reach their hotline at 540-434-0295.

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