NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) – October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and BHcare works to empower victims by providing advocacy and safe services, all while working for social change. Connecticut’s Morning Buzz Host Natasha Lubczenko was joined in the studio by BHcare Community and Education Coordinator Rachael Shippani, to discuss why this is such an important month.

Rachael says, “Domestic violence really is a public health issue. You know, back in the 70’s, we used to think of it as a private issue, but now we know, you know, it affects so many. It’s really important to bring awareness so that people know what to look for, and what services they can reach out to, for help.”

She explains what some of the services are that BHcare has available, and notes that they are confidential, which, for victims of domestic violence, is really important. Rachael says, “BHcare has the Umbrella Center for Domestic Violence Services and the whole Family Justice Center, and people can come and receive free services from us, get wrap-around services, support, counseling, advocacy and legal help, as well as safe shelter.”

BHcare has several locations throughout the state, and serves 19 towns, including in New Haven. If anyone is struggling and wants to come talk to someone about getting help, they can walk into their offices any time of the night or day. Rachael tells our viewers that, “Our councelors really work to advocate for victims and whatever support and help they’re looking for, and work through domestic violence counseling.”  “This includes a lot of safety planning, and making sure that people know ways that they can stay the most safe, in their situation.”

Want to help support this cause? Why not donate? BHcare has a special event today, at My Sister’s Place Thrift Store & Donation Center, located in Ansonia, where your donations can help to raise funds for the Umbrella Center, so that they can continue to provide services free of charge to their clients. Monetary donations are also accepted online. And then on Tuesday, October 24, at 1:00pm, BHcare has an event on the Long Wharf Pier called Sound of Hope, to honor and bring awareness to victims who have lost their lives, and victims who are now survivors.

Watch the full interview above, to learn more about the services offered by BHcare, and hear the staggering statistics about how many people are impacted by domestic violence. BHcare’s domestic violence and victim advocacy programs are dedicated to increasing awareness of domestic violence and its effect on the community, empowering those victimized by providing advocacy and safe and effective services, and to working for social change to eliminate domestic violence.

For more information about BHcare and its Domestic Violence & Victim Advocacy programs, or to get help, visit their website at: