From a shelter to a new home: Family Promise helps domestic viol - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

From a shelter to a new home: Family Promise helps domestic violence victims

Transitional housing for victims of domestic violence (Source: WECT) Transitional housing for victims of domestic violence (Source: WECT)

Kalina (she didn't want to give her last name) is a victim of domestic violence.

For 11 years, Kalina lived with a man who promised to love and cherish her but instead, "he threatened me. He will break all my bones and send me home and I will never see my son if I don't do whatever he wants," she said.

Kalina said her husband wanted her to work and make money while he sat at home all day and spent their money on scams.  

"I didn't know how to say no. I have never said no to him or refused or been negative about things. I was complying and I was serving and I was following and I was submitting," Kalina said. "I was afraid and then I had a child and I had to endure more."

Now, Kalina is in an apartment or her own. There are no reminders, no pictures of Kalina's husband in her new apartment but the memories of being beaten and abused physically and mentally still haunt her.  

"As a human being, not only husband and wife, you don't do that to another person. You don't belittle and you don't hit, you don't use, you don't abuse, you don't take, you don't go over somebody, it's the whole thing," Kalina said.

Kalina says her love and concern for her son made her finally decide to leave. 

One morning two years ago instead of driving her son to school, Kalina drove to the domestic violence shelter.

"I was so petrified. I was looking behind my back all the time. I stayed one hour until they opened the door of the office. I stayed in the parking lot. That was the longest hour in my life," said Kalina.

When she left, Kalina was only able to grab a few important documents. She didn't have the means to rent an apartment. She didn't have a bed or another sweater or another t-shirt.

"We were on the street but not on the street," said Kalina.

Thanks to Family Promise of the Lower Cape Fear, Kalina now is in an apartment.

Family Promise also helps victims find jobs. They do have to help pay the rent in their new apartment. They gradually pay more as they become more financially independent.

Thursday night, you can help support victims of domestic violence and raise awareness by attending the 28th annual Take Back the Night March and Rally at 6:30 p.m. at Riverfront Park in downtown Wilmington.

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