Mother’s Day Tributes 2021

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Give tribute to a woman who has touched your life by sending her a Mother’s Day Tribute Card from St. Martha’s Hall. With a contribution of $30 or more, she will receive a tribute card and a $10 Russell’s Cafe gift card. 

Your gift will provide safe shelter, crisis intervention, 24-hour hotline, three meals each day, toiletries, bus tickets, support groups, advocacy, and other necessary services for the abused women and their children who seek shelter at St. Martha’s Hall every day.  What a wonderful tribute to the special mom or woman in your life!

How to make a tribute:

  • Make your gift online and make sure to add your tribute information (name, address, and how you want your name displayed) where it says special instructions to the seller. Special instructions are located under the monthly donation option.
  • Call us at 314-533-1313 and make your tributes over the phone.
  • Email your tribute information stmarthashall@att.net and provide a call-back number.
  • Send your contribution to P.O. Box 4950, St. Louis, MO 63108. Please include your tribute’s name and address.

Please send your tributes by May 3 to ensure that your loved one will receive her tribute in time for Mother’s Day on May 9.

Summer Shelter Shower

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We are taking our shelter shower online! Cap off summer by supporting St. Martha’s Hall. Traditionally, our shelter showers are held in-person and are a valuable way for us to get much-needed supplies to keep our costs low.

This year, we’re asking for gift cards from various stores and pharmacies. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the supplies we need are hard to come by, and we are using supplies at a faster rate than normal. Using gift cards, staff can purchase essential items as they become available. Gift cards also help us purchase prescription and over-the-counter medications for residents, who are often uninsured.

You can purchase gift cards directly from our wish list, send eGiftCards to laurena@saintmarthas.org, or mail them directly to us at:

St. Martha’s Hall
ATTN: Jessica Woolbright
PO Box 4950
St. Louis, MO 63108

Watch this video, featuring our Executive Director, Jessica Woolbright, to learn why donations are especially important right now!

Shelter Services are Running 7/28/2020

St. Martha’s Hall is back up and running as of midnight on July 27th. All residents were placed in safe, secure accommodations and continued receiving supportive services from shelter staff.

Our shelter has been professionally disinfected and we will continue to implement our pandemic policies and procedures, including mask-wearing, disinfecting of the shelter three times daily, wellness checks for staff and residents, and social distancing among staff and residents as well.

Thank you to the community for your continued support. This has not been an easy situation to navigate and, we suspect, we will all continue to be challenged along the way. But as the saying goes, the only way around it is through it.

Shelter Service Interruption due to COVID

Due to potential COVID exposure and out of an abundance of caution, we are ceasing shelter operations for the next 14 days. During that time, the shelter will be professionally cleaned and disinfected and no one will be allowed to enter the building. In making this decision, we consulted with the St. Louis City homeless COVID team, which includes a doctor from Wash U.

Current shelter residents will be placed in temporary accommodations during this time, and staff will continue to provide case management and support services remotely. Our crisis line will go straight to voicemail and will provide important referral information.

This is not a decision we came to lightly, and one that was made with input from experts to prioritize the health and safety of our residents, staff, and community.

In these uncertain times, we wish you all continued good health.

Public Comments on Victims of Crime Act Grant

St. Martha’s Hall received the same amount for the 2019 -2021 contract that they received for the 2017 -2019 contract. The same amount does not allow for the following:

  • Annual cost-of-living salary increases or increase in health insurance
  • Coverage of all personnel salary and benefits in the third funding period
  • Funds to cover the Multi-language Access Program (MAP) contract, which allows St. Martha’s to receive interpreters for women in shelter who do not speak English
  • Bus tickets for women so they able to have transportation to appointments, employment, interviews, childcare, school, et cetera
  • Emergency cell phones for residents when their cell phones are deemed unsafe
  • Funds to continue The Court Watch Project, a community-based initiative, led by St. Martha’s Hall that works within the court system to help improve court processes regarding Order of Protection hearings. Court Watch works to create a safe environment for victims by ensuring that offenders are held accountable and that court room procedures are always followed

The St. Louis region is underfunded in proportion of the poverty population in our area. According to the 2020 Missouri Poverty Report, St. Louis is the only urban location on the list of top 10 with the highest poverty rates. Thus, the need for an increase in VOCA funds was already felt before the global pandemic. St. Louis City/County was hit particularly hard by the pandemic. By early June, there were over 7500 confirmed cases and close to 700 deaths. We are all being told that we are safer at home but that is not the case for many. The widespread impacts of COVID exasperate our need for funding.

Lack of funding means that we might have to cut services to the community. Emergency shelter services are a critical first step for women and children fleeing domestic violence—it is the first step to gaining stability and ending the cycle of abuse. In 2019, we served 117 women and 152 children, which is higher than our usual averages of 100 women and 115 children. The community needs our services. The other agencies in the state, funded by VOCA, also need our services. We cannot do this work alone; all of these victim services agencies across the state allow victims of crime to access critical wraparound services. Please, we are asking you to restore us to adequate funding, so we can continue working to service victims of crime in our community.

Working Toward Change

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For almost four decades, St. Marthas Hall has been advocating for victims and survivors of domestic violence. Now, we must stand with those who face another type of injustice and continue to seek change so all are treated equally. Our condolences go out to the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and so many other Black men and women who have been victims of police violence. We know these are not isolated acts but centuries of bigotry, discrimination, and systemic racism.

Some of us have attended protests, others have spoken out, many have looked for ways to work for justice and act for peace.

To our staff members, board members, supporters, and donors that are Black – words are not enough but please know we see you, we hear you, we acknowledge your suffering, anger, and fear, we love and respect you. We cannot walk in your shoes but we can walk with you and your loved ones.

To those who are or want to be allies in the fight against racism – we value your work to ensure safety, opportunity and justice for all. Let us all remember that it is the responsibility of White people to end racism.

While carrying on our mission to break the cycle of violence, we cannot ignore or turn a blind eye to the pain in our community. This impacts the victims and survivors we serve, our community and our future.

We must come together as a community to learn more about racism and how to be allies, to listen to those most impacted by violence and hate, and to stand with those doing the vital work protesting against oppression.

Be well, our friends.

COVID-19 Response

In the midst of this crisis and pandemic, we are providing 24-hour emergency shelter to abused women and their children. We are maintaining services to the community while prioritizing the health and safety of our residents, staff, and greater community. Our 24-hour Crisis Hotline is always available at 314.533.1313.

We still have families living in shelter. We are practicing social distancing among staff and residents. During each shift, staff is cleaning and disinfecting all community areas that remain open as well as their own workspaces. Employees are working remotely when possible and we have minimized the number of staff on each shift.

We are dedicated to the women and children we serve and to our community. That will never change. During this time of uncertainty, we are doing our best to continue being a safe haven for those who need us most.

These are uncharted waters for everyone, but we feel certain that the only way through this is together. Together, we will persevere. Together, we will get through this. Be safe.

Fall Shelter Shower on October 24

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Many families come into shelter with little to nothing. Our shelter creates a home for all of these women and children, which can be costly. These showers help us give families the necessities while keeping our costs low.

When: Thursday, October 24, 2019  | 6-8- p.m

Details: Appetizers and refreshments will be provided.

Wish List

  • Bath towels
  • Washcloths
  • Twin sheet sets
  • hairbrushes
  • Brooms and dust pans
  • Gift cards (Target, Walmart, Schnucks, Aldi, Walgreens)

RSVP to Lauren by October 15.

Want to help, but can’t attend? Check out our online wish lists here.

 

Change in Leadership at St. Martha’s Hall

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The Board of Directors of St. Martha’s Hall has accepted the retirement of Michelle Schiller-Baker, the Executive Director, effective December 31, 2019. Michelle has been the Executive Director since the opening of St. Martha’s Hall in 1983 and has been instrumental in the movement to end violence against women.

We are pleased to announce that Jessica Woolbright, the Children’s Program Coordinator of St. Martha’s Hall has accepted the Executive Director position, effective January 1, 2020. Jessica Woolbright has been with St. Martha’s Hall since 2000.

We thank Michelle for her many years of dedication and exemplary service and welcome Jessica to her new position.