need help now? call the ywca rock county emergency helpline (608) 752-2583 or text (608) 371-9288.

Success Stories

 overcoming barriers

Shelly (not her real name) came to YWCA Rock County for help after leaving her abuser, who had at one time stabbed her. Her children had been taken from her and placed into foster care. That was the last straw for Shelly. She was ready to move forward.  Since she has lived in the YWCA's domestic violence shelter, Shelly has broken down many barriers. She sought individual therapy along with the YWCA's survivor support groups. The YWCA provided financial aid to a driver's education school so she could receive her driver's license.
With this added independence, Shelly now works both a full-time job and a part-time job. Her kids will be returning home to her by the end of this year. Shelly spends her days off house-hunting. She has inspired other residents in the domestic violence shelter, and staff members admire her perseverance.


Alexis experienced several abusive relationships throughout her life. As a result, she had no belief in herself. She also had no clue to what she wanted to do with her life except to be free of abuse. While staying in the YWCA Rock County domestic violence shelter, Alexis took the Nurturing Parenting classes even though she didn’t have children. Before she left the YWCA shelter she applied to college and for FAFSA financial aid. She is now enrolled in Early Childhood Development classes and well on her way to her new career.


The YWCA's Transitions for Women program taught one woman self-discipline --both in leaving her abuser and controlling her own anger. When she started our program, she thought it would be a struggle. Now, she says she feels a great deal of accomplishment.. She says, "I can hold my head and say, Yes I got off track, but what matters is how fast I got back on track. I’m not where I want to be, but I ain’t where I used to be."  



Read how a YWCA shelter resident is leading her children out of a dangerous situation.

Substance abuse is one of the challenges women face while in an abusive situation.

The YWCA helped one woman navigate the health care field so she could find relief from pain.