Category Archives: Uncategorized

Commanders player James Smith-Williams advocates for survivors and their pets

“James Smith-Williams plays defense for the Washington Commanders. But off the field, he defends survivors of domestic violence,” WUSA9 reports.

“According to Purple Leash Project, only 15% of domestic violence shelters allow pets.”

“It’s not really a highlighted cause, but [domestic violence victims] stay because pets are an extension of their family,” James said.

“That’s why he’s teaming up with Purina and the Purple Leash Project for an initiative to increase pet-friendly domestic abuse shelters,” like Doorways.

In May 2009, Doorways became the only shelter in Virginia, and one of nine in the country, to offer safe shelter for people and pets fleeing violence. The all-weather kennel, which has heat, air conditioning, and indoor/outdoor areas, can house dogs, cats, and other small animals like hamsters and turtles. Learn more about our Domestic Violence Safehouse.

“Smith-Williams will continue to use his platform to make sure survivors of domestic violence and their pets stay together by wearing custom Purple Leash cleats for the Commanders’ Week 13 game this season,” WUSA9 reports.

Household Pets Flee Violence, Too

Cleaning supplies, sheets, garbage bags and cat beds. Doorways has a wish list for the occupants of their Domestic Violence Safehouse which includes the residents as well as their pets. Doorways is the only shelter in Virginia and one of nine in the country who offer safe shelter for people and pets fleeing violence. The all weather kennel has heat and air conditioning and indoor and outdoor areas.

“We know that leaving a pet behind is a barrier to fleeing domestic violence,” says Joy Myers, Doorways’ Chief Development Officer. Continue reading.

What it’s like to learn online from inside a homeless shelter – The Washington Post

“The shuttering of schools nationwide in March immediately shattered any semblance of stability for millions of homeless children who depend on schools for food, emotional support, or even just a warm, uncomplicated place to think,” wrote Hannah Natanson. “Trying to learn inside shelters for the past nine months, students have faced spotty WiFi, crowded rooms, high noise levels and harassment from some peers who deduce, over Zoom, that they lack a home.”

Read more in the Washington Post to learn what it’s like to attend school virtually while living at Doorways and other shelters.

The child in the photograph above is a model whose image has been used for illustrative purposes only.

Doorways Chief Program Officer provides survivors’ perspective on FOX 5 DC

New DNA information leads police to serial rape suspect in Virginia nearly 30 years later
By Evan Lambert and FOX 5 DC Digital Team │ Published December 2, 2020

“Knowing that the criminal justice system did its due diligence, (…) for a survivor, in particular, says that, ‘Someone believes me, and what happened to me mattered,’ and that’s incredibly validating for a survivor, especially a survivor of domestic violence or a survivor of sexual violence,” says Samantha Clarke, MSW, MPA, Chief Program Officer at Doorways. Hear more on Fox 5 DC with Evan Lambert FOX 5 DC.
If you a survivor in need of support, please contact Doorways any time at 703-237-0881. Advocates are available to speak with you 24/7. Whether you experienced something recently or years ago, you are not alone, and we are here to help. Learn more.

Arlington’s Intimate Partner/Domestic and Sexual Violence Resources: You Are Not Alone

According to the CDC, 1 in 5 women and 1 in 7 men have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime. And those numbers are often higher for folks who are transgender, gender non-conforming, or nonbinary. If you or someone you know has been impacted by intimate partner/domestic or sexual violence in Arlington, you are not alone. We are here to help:

Your COVID Impact Report, from Doorways

Back in March, we asked for your support as we began to navigate this unprecedented time, to enable us to adapt and adjust Doorways’ work in unprecedented ways.

With your support, in just weeks, Doorways shifted our programs and service delivery to meet the needs of current clients while adhering to CDC guidelines to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. We hope you enjoy learning more in Doorways’ COVID-19 Impact Report.

Thank You

Thanks to you, Doorways has remained open, continuing to serve current clients and welcoming new families into our care.

  • In the four months since COVID-19 hit our community, we served 133 people in shelter and housing, 30 of whom we housed in hotels for their health due to the pandemic.
  • Unable to provide therapy in person, we secured new technology which enabled our therapists to continue serving clients via nearly 600 telemental health sessions.
  • Plus more! Download Doorways’ COVID-19 Impact Report to see more ways Doorways has continued to serve clients.

We are so grateful for all you’ve made possible these past four months. We thank you in advance for continuing to support families at Doorways as we face new challenges together, such as returning to school, virtually and/or in person.

Learn how you can support kids at Doorways this back-to-school season. Stay tuned for more ways to help in our newsletter, This Week at Doorways! Subscribe now.

Open Letter from Doorways’ Board of Directors

“It has been an incredibly painful few weeks as we have all watched events unfold in the wake of the awful murder of George Floyd and loss of many other Black lives. The aftermath and outpouring of emotions across the country has demanded justice. The new calls to end racism are steady and justified. We support these efforts and join the community in a call to end the systemic economic and racial injustice that persists and devalues Black lives. All of this is happening in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic and an unprecedented economic downturn that is bringing massive job and wage loss, housing instability and overall insecurity to families, amplifying the need for the housing and supportive services Doorways brings to the Arlington community.” Download the complete statement to continue reading.

Statement of Solidarity from Arlington’s Safety Net Nonprofits

Safety Net ArlingtonJune 4, 2020 — As Arlington safety net nonprofits working with marginalized people in our community, we feel and recognize the pain and suffering of so many over the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and many more not caught on camera. These deaths are reminders of just how far we still must go in the name of racial justice, while the protests are a sign that many Americans are sick and tired. Within our network are leaders and staff who, as people of color, also regularly face biases from the police, general public, and colleagues.

Safety Net Arlington stands by protestors who step up in the name of eradicating racism and advancing racial equity. The very fact that the majority of the families we serve are people of color is a result of systemic oppression and racism, which lies deeply rooted in the foundation of our nation and our own history here in Arlington. As safety net providers, we pledge to redouble our efforts to serve and connect in solidarity with our community members who are people of color and to influence change to elevate their dignity and humanity.

AHC, Inc.
Arlington Community Foundation
Arlington Food Assistance Center
Arlington Free Clinic
Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing
Arlington Thrive
Bonder & Amanda Johnson CDC
Bridges to Independence
Doorways for Women and Families
Northern VA Family Service
Offender Aid and Restoration
Phoenix House MidAtlantic
Shirlington Employment and Education Center
Virginia Cooperative Extension, Arlington
Wesley Housing

Safety Net Arlington is a group of Arlington nonprofits who provide direct safety net services to Arlington’s most vulnerable residents in partnership with Arlington County. Arlington Community Foundation serves as its convener.