When someone is being abused, it can be difficult for the victim to leave the abuser for a myriad of reasons, including the risk of homelessness. However, there are places which will lend a caring and giving hand, such as Mary & Martha House.
Mary & Martha House’s shelters provide a safe haven for victims to escape abuse and begin recovery and are designed to be like home with each family having their own space. Its goal is to provide emergency shelter, transitional housing and support services to victims of domestic violence as well as homeless women and their children so that they may gain employment and successfully transition into permanent housing.
Bill Chini, executive director of Mary & Martha House, said, “We provide shelter during their transition. Our clients are provided a case manager who works with them, one-on-one, to identify their own personal barriers and how to overcome them. We offer a program called Break The Cycle, which includes five areas of instruction for the women to assist them and provide growth in key areas on the road to independence. The five areas are Financial Literacy, Nutritional Guidance, Female Empowerment, Parenting Skills and Spiritual Guidance.”
Chini added, “Our intake process starts with a phone call to our office at [813-645-7874] or fill out an online intake form, which can be found at https://marymarthahouse.org/intake-form/. The intake specialist drills down into how they need assistance, with or without our organization. Our intake specialist will then work with the individual to ensure they are receiving the best care possible.”
Chini said, “We are proud to be the catalyst in our fight against domestic violence and homelessness, and that our community has entrusted us for over 40 years and continues to support our mission to help women and families who are desperately in need of assistance and guidance.”
Mary & Martha House is funded through multiple channels, including some county funding. Chini said, “Our Mary & Martha House Fashion and Home Goods Thrift Store (located behind our offices) generates revenue for the mission thanks to the wonderful people who donate gently used items and the wonderful volunteers who run the store. However, most of our funding comes from the community by way of unrestricted donations/grants, fundraising events and individuals who want to help us make a difference.”
The office and thrift store are located at 312 S. U.S. Hwy. 41 in Ruskin.