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Empty bottles scattered the floor, so she braced for impact

Battling bruises, Sarah’s domestic violence recovery illustrates the transformative impact of community intervention and generosity

Every day Sarah* goes home, not knowing if she will be welcomed with a smile or with a threat.

Holding her breath as she enters the house, she looks for signs of safety, but the bottles on the ground share a different story. For years Sarah’s husband has been a severe alcoholic. When her husband is drunk, the house becomes unsafe for her physically and mentally. Her husband often lashes out with physical or verbal abuse. Sarah and her family are broken and struggling with alcohol addiction. Her son is also now a dangerous drinker. Escaping domestic violence and trauma is not a battle to be fought alone.

Her husband also sells needed household items and their domesticated animals. While facing violence, Sarah and her family suffer from poverty because of her husband’s and son’s drinking addiction. “Food becomes scarce at home,” shares Sarah, “and my husband beats me every night when arriving home late while drunk.” Sarah tried to create attention and change through a hunger strike. Sadly, her family saw little change, and she lost hope.

Thankfully, Tearfund and its local partners introduced Sarah to a trauma healing group. After hearing about the hunger strike, the local neighbours of Sarah knew she needed help. So, a counsellor from the group came to visit. They helped Sarah begin to eat again: “the group counselled me a lot until I took the porridge and food that was brought to me by the healing group,” shared Sarah. This group created a turning point for Sarah; it helped her eat again and focus on healing.

“The counselling offered to me by counsellors was the turning point to change my mind from the hunger strike act and any other ill thoughts,” shares Sarah. “Through the word of God and with examples given by the healing group, I have found peace of mind and grant every incident in my house to God to do His part.”

Unfair and unsafe situations have affected her and her family. Because of generous people across Canada, Tearfund and its church partners have created trauma-healing groups that seek holistic change and support for one another. She shares what the donors and partners mean to her: “I thank God and those who contributed to rescuing me from all kinds of stress I was undergoing. This is what the healing group has done for me. Thank you.”

While the situation is improving, Sarah’s journey is not over. Please join us in praying for Sarah and others who face domestic violence and trauma inside their homes, and in helping people see their worth through God’s eyes.


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