Description & Mission
The Domestic Abuse Family Shelter, Inc. (DAFS) began as the realization of efforts of employees of Southeast Mississippi Legal Services, local attorneys, are ministers, and other interested community members after over 500 calls for help from victims were received by Legal Services. DAFS is dedicated to breaking the cycle of abuse by maintaining a program with a broad base of services, community support, as well as local and state involvement. The organization provides victims of domestic violence with the skills, tools and understanding to make choices leading to violence-free living.
Support Services Partner Agency, Protection from Domestic Violence
United Way of Southeast Mississippi funds are instrumental in maintaining service levels to victims of domestic violence and their children. The Domestic Abuse Family Shelter utilizes grant funding for operational expenses at the Hattiesburg shelter and counseling office to match state and federal grants including VOCA, the Mississippi Department of Health Domestic Violence Fund, and FVPSA grants. United Way of Southeast Mississippi funds also help cover the costs of client medications, birth certificates, ID cards, and other expenses that allow clients to find true independence when they leave the shelter.
Domestic Abuse Family Shelter Resources
- Crisis Number: 800-649-1092
- Call this number toll-free, 24/7 statewide to receive information regarding housing assistance, non-residential counseling, victim advocacy or other community referrals and assistance.
- Temporary Emergency Shelter
- Individual and group counseling to victims/survivors is available for residential clients in Laurel and Hattiesburg
- Non-residents can seek counseling at one of the administration offices
- Domestic Violence Intervention Program
- This alternate sentencing for batterers is available through court-order or on a voluntary basis. This men's group meets weekly and is male-facilitated to break the cycle of violence and to hopefully reunite the family in a peaceful environment. For more information, call 601-489-0157.
Volunteer with the Domestic Abuse Family Shelter
DAFS gives community members an opportunity to donate their time and service through answering the crisis line, helping with direct services at the shelters, helping with grocery shopping, doing maintenance and repairs, and office work. Volunteer experiences like these provide an increased awareness of DAFS's services and the clients they serve.