These are extraordinary times. We could not have predicted even a few months ago how different our lives would be. How we would be sheltering at home, trying to practice social distancing and wearing masks to prevent the spread of this highly contagious and dangerous virus, COVID-19.
This new way of living has been challenging to impossible for all of us and especially if our homes consist of only one room or two shared by several families, making social distancing extremely difficult. Or, our homes may not be safe, leading to the need to seek shelter during an episode of Domestic Violence (DV).
While sheltering at home is the best way to contain COVID-19, the sad and stark outcome of the sheltering in-place orders is that many communities are experiencing a rise in DV cases of up to 30%. As a family medicine physician, I have seen this firsthand. Like the young patient I saw two weeks ago who came in to be treated for an injury after being attacked by their partner.
During this crisis and since 2009, Be Alright continues to be a goods and services-oriented organization that is responsive and flexible. For example, in the last month, we have provided funds to the various COVID-19 drives established by our partnering DV organizations: Apna Ghar, House of the Good Shepherd, Madonna House, Greenhouse, Su Casa, Maria Shelter, Family Rescue and Centro Romero while also delivering cleaning supplies, diapers, feminine hygiene products, clothing and gift cards to our partners. Now more than ever, we humbly acknowledge that it is not up to us to decide what a survivor and shelter needs but in fact, it is always up to them.
The primary way we sustain our mission to support survivors of domestic violence and shelters is through your generous support and service. The goods and services you help us attain are crucial in the support of a survivor and their family as they are taking their next steps toward a safer life. Every item donated is also an act of kindness that embodies a message of love and hope. And now more than ever, kindness, hope and love will be the vehicles by which we survive, together.
Ultimately, our service continues because we know wholeheartedly that these acts of kindness will shape a future world where domestic violence is no longer tolerated. Additionally, our website offers a center of information and resources about the circumstances currently going on - in the case that you would like to educate yourself more about the COVID-19 pandemic, please go to "Be Informed" to learn more.
Thank you for joining us in our mission and may you be well during this time.
Great Love, Sonia Oyola, MD, ABOIM Founder and Board President
Be Alright P.O. Box 221532 Chicago, Illinois 60622 773-349-2775