Monday, March 22, 2010

Photos from Marian's Attic Fashion Show

We love all the photos that folks have been sending us of last week's Marian's Attic Fashion Show. (Missed it? We've uploaded a bunch of them to our Facebook page or you can view them right here:

And if you like what you see fashion-wise, stop by Marian's Attic.  Since all the fashions and accessories at the show came right from the shop, you'll find something just perfect for spring. 

Marian's Attic is located in the Valley Forge Shopping Center in King of Prussia, PA (exact address is 255 Town Center Road).  Hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.  We're open late on Thursdays until 8 p.m. 

Donations of gently-used womens, men's, and children's clothing, accessories, shoes, costume jewelry, household items (no furniture, sorry), knickknacks and collectibles, books, videos, and DVDs  are accepted during business hours and a tax receipt will be gladly provided.  For more information about Marian's Attic, call 610-337-3068.

Monday, March 8, 2010

In Just One Day

Laurel House was among 1,648 domestic violence programs throughout the United States country that participated in a national project called Domestic Violence Counts: A 24 Hour Census of Domestic Violence Shelters and Services. It is coordinated through the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV), and this is the 4th year for the project.

Shelters are asked to track their statistics for one day (which Laurel House does every day for funding requirements). The results, released today in recognition of International Women's Day (but with the full understanding that domestic violence does not discriminate against gender), are shocking.

83% of the country's domestic violence programs collectively tracked their statistics for one designated day, September 15, 2009.

Within those programs, 65,321 adults and children were assisted through shelter, transitional housing, and advocacy.

23,045 hotline calls were answered (that's over 16 calls every minute!)

30,735 people were trained at 1,468 community education sessions.

9,280 requests for services went unmet because of a lack of resources or staffing. 60% of the unmet requests were for emergency shelter or transitional housing and 40% of the unmet requests were for non-residential services.

17,445 children under the age of 18 spent the night of September 15, 2009 in a domestic violence shelter or transitional housing program - far more than the approximately 11,000 children born every day across the U.S.

7 babies were born in a domestic violence shelter or transitional housing program.

For the full 2009 report and state summaries, please go to

Friday, February 26, 2010

On Domestic Violence as the Perfect Winter Storm

What an unprecedented winter this has been! As I write this post, we're in the midst of yet another storm, and the snow continues to swirl and drift in gusts outside my window. What we thought was expected is now different. What was planned is now cancelled, postponed, changed.

In a way, it's similar to what happens to so many people who are affected by domestic violence, isn't it?

Domestic violence is the perfect winter storm - of warnings and advisories and states of emergencies, of confusion swirling about, of coldness, of the not knowing what to expect on our doorstep in the morning.

And yet, always, in the midst of the storm and its aftermath there is help in the kindness of strangers, of the dedication of those in caring professions and those protecting others.

We saw this firsthand during the blizzard earlier this month. Although our administrative offices closed for two days, our shelter remained open and operating because during the February blizzard, there were 9 women and 9 children in crisis who needed shelter from the storms of domestic abuse in their lives.

Our staff member Michelle Malone and relief worker Robbin Garrett stayed at Laurel House's shelter from the morning of February 9 until the afternoon of February 12, so that those 9 women and 9 kids could be safe. In the coldest of days, that type of dedication is inspiring - and heartwarming.

It's also an example of why your financial support is so needed. Without your monetary gifts to Laurel House, there wouldn't have been a Michelle or Robbin at the shelter for three straight days.

There wouldn't have been a hotline for the young mother to call, the one who carried her infant in her arms while walking to the shelter in the blizzard.

There wouldn't have been heat, or the electricity to cook a warm meal or draw a hot bath.

We were there in the storm, and we are there in this storm, too.
And Laurel House will be there in the storm of domestic violence for as long as we are needed.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Be Part of Laurel House's 30th Anniversary "Tribute and Wish" Book

As part of our year long celebration of Laurel House's 30 years of service to the community, we are compiling an electronic “Tribute and Wish” Book. This e-Book will be a place for colleagues, supporters and community members to share their good wishes for Laurel House. The Tribute Book will first be displayed at our upcoming 30th Anniversary Gala to be held at Meadowlands Country Club in Blue Bell on April 17, 2010. Following that event, the e-Book will be highlighted on our website for the remainder of the year.

We are reaching out to you to ask you to consider creating a “Wish” or a “Tribute” to be included in the e-Book. The cost to place a wish or tribute (consisting of a maximum of 100 characters) is just $30.00. All funds raised by this initiative will be used to support our direct service programs, as well as our community education/dating violence prevention efforts.

Larger ads, as well as “Tributes or “Wishes” of more than 100 characters, are also available:

Full Page (8 ½” x 11”)

Half Page (8 ½” x 5 ½”)

Quarter Page (4 ¼” x 5 ½”)

30th Anniversary Message (100 characters maximum)

General conditions:
All camera ready ads are subject to the approval of Laurel House. Please email to
Payment must be made in full with ad and is non-refundable. Please make checks payable to Laurel House.
Camera ready art, Hi-Res PDF or EPS format preferred.

We value our on-going relationship with our community supporters, and we very much appreciate your consideration of our request. Please feel free to contact Beth Sturman, Executive Director, with questions or for more information about our upcoming 30th Anniversary Gala or other 30th Anniversary activities. Beth can be reached via email at:, or by phone at: 610-277-1860, ext. 113. Thank you.

Friday, January 29, 2010

PECO Energy Warms Hearts with Donation to Laurel House

Outside, it's quite cold - but our hearts (and those of the families in our shelter) are warm, thanks to a recent fundraiser held by PECO Energy.

Each December, PECO employees at the Plymouth Service Building coordinate a baked goods and craft sale to benefit selected nonprofits in the immediate community. For the second consecutive year, PECO employees selected Laurel House as a beneficiary.

Laurel House was delighted to receive $420.00, representing a portion of the event's proceeds. (Our friends at Fellowship House in Conshohocken received the other portion.)

Attending the January 28 check presentation were (from left to right, pictured above) PECO representatives Nancy Mifflin and Eileen Mather; Beth Sturman, Executive Director of Laurel House; and PECO employees Cheryl Dowd, Sue Campbell, and Dave MacFarland.

Dave MacFarland, Manager of Support Services - Training, Methods, M&DS for PECO, wrote us a letter that explained why PECO selected Laurel House.

"We used this ... activity to raise money which could be given as a donation to a local agency that is focused on improving the lives of others. Your organization, the Laurel House, was identified as one of the agencies near our service building that is positively impacting the community .... Your efforts to help the families, specifically abused women and children, has not gone unnoticed."

Thank you, Dave, and everyone else at PECO. With the cold temperatures this weekend, this donation warms our hearts as we will use these much-needed funds to warm the hearts of the 11 women and 10 kids who are calling our shelter home.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Malvern School to Host Chick-fil-A Fundraiser on 1/25 to Benefit LH

Join us for dinner at the Chick-fil-A in Audubon, PA on Monday, January 25! The Malvern School of West Norriton will be hosting a Spirit Night to benefit Laurel House and everyone is invited.

DATE: Monday, January 25
TIME: 5 - 8 p.m.
WHERE: Chick-fil-A, 680 S. Trooper Road, West Norriton, PA

A portion of all sales between 5 - 8 p.m. will be donated to Laurel House. (Even drive-thru orders count, too!)

There will also be a prize wheel for $1, with 100% of all proceeds from the prize wheel being donated to Laurel House.

Thanks so much to our friends and the students at The Malvern School of West Norriton for organizing this event. We hope to see you there!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

From Our Families: A Holiday Thank You

These emails of thanks just arrived in our in-box, and because you've been so generous this holiday season, we wanted you to hear how your generosity has brought the spirit of the season to two Laurel House families.

"I can hardly put into words how I feel about what you all have brought to me this Christmas. I actually feel the joy of this season. I was floored when I saw everything I asked for in front of me. Please know I am so grateful & I am sooooo looking forward to sharing these gifts with my son. Thank you. Thank you! BTW, I'm scheduled to pick up my key for permanent housing on Jan 25!!"

And this:

"Thank you sooo much! We are indebted to your organization forever. The presents were great for the kids and I now have People pc (dial up) for my internet access at home. I will try to stop in today for the [donated] ballet tickets and on Monday go to Philadelphia to redeem them HOPEFULLY for the Dec 29th performance (my daughter T.'s birthday)."

Thank you, for giving the spirit of the season through your gifts to Laurel House.

Wishing you and yours a wonderful holiday and happy, healthy 2010!