Grant supports healing for crime victims

The VOCA grant enables us to continue providing free, life-saving counseling and support groups to women who have experienced trauma, violence and abuse.

The VOCA grant enables us to continue providing free, life-saving counseling and support groups to women who have experienced trauma, violence and abuse.

The Women’s Initiative has received a two-year grant for $367,436 annually to support our efforts to provide transformative mental health services for women who have experienced trauma, violence and abuse.

These federal funds, allocated to the state of Virginia through the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) Victim Services Grant Program, will help local women gain freedom from debilitating mental health symptoms related to PTSD, depression and panic disorders.

Through one-on-one work with our therapists, women learn to reconnect with their deepest selves.
— Kerry Day, Director of Philanthropy

“The potential long-term effects of trauma on an individual’s physical and emotional health are well documented. That said, healing can and does happen. Through one-on-one work with our therapists, women learn to reconnect with their deepest selves, honor their resilience, foster essential social supports and develop appropriate coping skills,” said Kerry Day, Director of Philanthropy. “This VOCA grant serves as an important part of this transformation by enabling us to provide free, life-saving individual counseling and support group services to victims of crime.”

This generous grant is for the fiscal years of 2020 and 2021. The Women’s Initiative must secure a mandatory local match of $91,859.

TWI was first awarded a VOCA grant in late 2017 for an annual amount of approximately $100,000.

In announcing these new VOCA grants, Governor Ralph Northam named critical mental health treatment as one of the essential services for victims of crime. The Women’s Initiative’s mental health services regardless of ability to pay reach more than 4,000 women annually.

Over 90 percent of TWI clients are victims of crime, most commonly sexual assault and domestic violence. The prevalence of violence and abuse in women’s lives translates to greater mental health need: for example, women are twice as likely to develop an anxiety disorder compared to men. They also attempt suicide approximately twice as often.

It is The Women’s Initiative’s belief that women can recover and heal from traumatic experiences in their lives. We invite contributions from the community to help us reach our mandatory match to continue this important work. Donate today.

Watch a CBS19 News feature about how the VOCA grant will support the work of The Women’s Initiative here.

Barn Party raises $118K for vital care

Photos by Brook Robinson

A gorgeous autumn day at Bellair Farm set the stage for an unforgettable 2018 Family Barn Party. Over 500 guests joined the fun and $118,000+ was raised in support of vital mental health care for women in need. Yeehaw! As volunteer Indigo Day shared, “It was epic.” Monica Prichard, Kristin Cory and Erika Jack’s talent and can-do leadership made all the difference. We thank our superb co-chairs, committee, volunteers, sponsors, in-kind vendors and supporters for their belief in our mission! Because of you, women in our community are finding renewed mental health and wellness.

Interested in becoming a sponsor or a volunteer for the 2019 Family Barn Party on Sunday, September 29? Contact Director of Philanthropy Kerry Day at (434) 872-0047 x103 or


Bend Yoga
Investment Management of VA
Loring Woodriff Real Estate
Manchester Capital Management
Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital

Red Light Management
Wells Fargo Advisors

Carter Bank & Trust
Old Dominion Capital Management
Union Bank & Trust
Virginia National Bank
Volvo of Charlottesville
Woods Rogers


Kristin Cory, Co-Chair
Erika Jack, Co-Chair
Monica Prichard, Co-Chair

Maylisa Baldwin
Marie Bourgeois
Catherine Brown
Pam Calary
Kristin Clarens
Hobby Holmes Cole
Bridget Davis
Cynnie Davis
Marcela Foshay
Cassie Guy
Bebe Heiner
Christy Hickey
Laurie Kelly
Barkley Laing
Natasha Lawler
Jill Lerner
Maggie Noland
Susan Sheeran
Heather Sieg
Emily Westlake
Melanie Zink

This article is adapted from our Winter/Spring 2019 Newsletter.

Verdigris fashion show to benefit TWI

We are thrilled to be the beneficiary of

Verdigris Clothier's Fashion & Trunk Show
Thursday, February 22
7-9 pm

The evening begins with a runway show at Old Metropolitan Hall on the Downtown Mall, and then continues down the block at Verdigris. Ticket sales and a percentage of proceeds benefit our vital mental health services for women.

Tickets are $25 and can be purchased here.

"I am so pleased to partner with The Women's Initiative for this year's Fashion Show Benefit," said Mazi Vogler, owner of Verdigris. "As the mother of two young girls, I know it's important to support the invaluable service provided by The Women's Initiative. We all need help sometimes, and they aid women in our community regardless of their ability to pay for it. The Charlottesville that I live, work and raise my children in is strengthened by their important work. Because stronger women make a stronger community."

Support vital mental health care

"Winter White" by Ellen Hathaway

"Winter White" by Ellen Hathaway

Albert Camus once wrote, “In the depths of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.”  For many of the women we serve—especially those struggling with depression, anxiety and trauma—this exemplifies the transformation that takes place when they seek services here. Support from people like you helps make this self discovery possible.

In 2017, we will reach more than 3,700 women. Following the tragic events of the summer, demand for our services is greater than ever. In response, we are increasing walk-in clinic offerings, hiring new therapists, and implementing additional outreach into some of our hardest hit neighborhoods. The road ahead is long, but our resolve to strengthen services, break down barriers to care and help women regain mental health has never been more determined. 

We hope that you will consider making a gift as the year comes to a close and we wish you warmth, laughter and love during the holidays. 


Elizabeth Irvin, Executive Director, and Louise McNamee, Board Chair