You may notice that the words Hope and Healing have been creeping into the vocabulary of the Battered Women’s Shelter and Rape Crisis Center over the past few years. Allow me to explain this change. For over 40 years the RCC and BWS have grown their services in response to the needs of domestic violence and sexual assault survivors in our community. Hope & Healing comes as a response to those changes and growing needs, here’s how we’ve progressed.

The BWS of Summit County was founded in 1976. By 1996, our BWS services had reached both Summit and Medina counties with 3 facilities and 80 beds between the two counties. From 1999 – 2005 changes in both counties led to the merging of BWS and RCC in both counties. The search for a larger facility to house our new and growing services began not long after, and in 2011 the City of Akron and the Battered Women’s Shelter agreed to terms on a large facility. Enter a NEW NAME: The Center for Hope and Healing. This is now an umbrella name that is used to designate the “Home of the Battered Women’s Shelter and Rape Crisis Center” of both counties. The collaboration of the two victim organizations encourages efficiencies of time and money, along with best practices of social service programs.

This positive and optimistic name is no different than the name Summit Mall that houses many individual companies. Someday there may be other organizations under this umbrella name as additional programs are discussed and developed. BWS and RCC remain two separate 501C3 non-profit organizations. But we are united in supporting one another, growing in comprehensive and exceptional services for men, women, and children who have been victimized by horrific crimes. Our campus locations in both Summit and Medina Counties are a safe landing zone for thousands of our neighbors, friends, and family who wish to start their personal steps towards Hope and Healing.