As we round out our program year at DeeCilla Comfort Center, we begin what is arguably our most important part of the program: The Empowerment Phase. Understanding and feeling empowered is the most crucial idea we want our survivors to take away from their experience in our program. Our empowerment phase focuses on teaching our survivors to regain control of their lives in every aspect. Though this may sometimes feel like somewhat of a daunting task at first, our programs are designed to make the process as efficient as possible.
During the beginning of our new quarter, DeeCilla demonstrates the significance of empowerment by helping survivors with decision-making and firsthand reclamation of their own power. As it is part of our exit program, our “empowerment” phase teaches survivors to apply everything they learned over the course of their time with us. Amongst these teachings is that of how to efficiently manage time, money, parenting skills, and so much more!
To give an example of the impact of our exit program, I’ll briefly recount an experience one of our survivors had not so long ago. It was just prior to their grocery shopping trip when they were skeptical of whether or not they'd be able to feed their family for a week given the small amount of money they had available. This is important to understand because this was the survivors first time shopping after learning and working hard to balance their personal paycheck. Furthermore, this survivor had hit a significant personal milestone of moving from relying on government assistance to utilizing only money made from her employment. Mom, with motivation and support from her DeeCilla Community, balanced funds, made her meal plans, and grocery list and nervously headed out to the market. For moral support, to help them apply what they learned regarding spending, and to keep them encouraged, we accompanied them on their grocery trip. As we expected, our survivor was able to optimize their spending to the point where they bought even more groceries than they initially thought they could! What a joy it was to see the smile on the mom’s face. It was a different smile than we have seen before. A smile of joy, excitement, and a sense of empowerment and accomplishment. This is what the program is all about…mom continues to stick to her routine but definitely with a different sense of motivation and excitement as she truly feels more empowered.
Our goal is for these women and single mothers, who have endured so much, to reconnect to their power. As they continue their journey, beyond DeeCilla Comfort Center, we understand they will continue to face obstacles, but now they will understand how to use their polished skills along with their new found power to make healthy decisions for themselves and their families. These women are leaving DeeCilla with tools that leave them educated, encouraged and empowered to take steps to break the cycle of abuse, in hopes that our future generations can live free of abuse!
You can continue to support our efforts of Educating, Encouraging and Empowering survivors to break the cycle of abuse. Partner with DeeCilla Comfort Center by making a donation today!
Meet The Author
Emily Falcon is a Cuban-American student studying pre-med at Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, FL. She is also an undergraduate Research Assistant for Gulf War Illness clinical trials at NSU’s College of Osteopathic Medicine.