Giving Guide 2023: Women’s Center & Shelter

Women’s Center & Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh (WC&S) exists to end domestic violence (DV) and create safe spaces for help, healing, and hope. WC&S was founded nearly 50 years ago in a South Hills storefront as a place where women could just “come and be” as part of the Women’s Movement. What began with three beds, three couches, three sleeping bags, and one crib has grown into a full range of holistic and personalized programs and services designed to keep survivors of domestic violence and their children safe. More than a shelter, WC&S works to create spaces, both within our center walls and out in the community, that encourage growth and empower survivors on their journey to build new lives. Knowing that anyone can experience domestic violence, our programs and services are here to serve all survivors, no matter who you are or who you love.

“I feel like I actually have help from a whole community that wants to lift me up. It means a lot that you believe in me.”

In the past few years, the needs of survivors have evolved as situations of abuse have increased in frequency, complexity, and severity. Because these needs continuously change, WC&S works diligently to adapt our programs to ensure the quality of service we provide to survivors and their children live up to our values of SUCCESS (Safety, Uplifting Others, Compassion, Courage, Equity, Survivor-Centered Advocacy, and Stewardship). 

Being able to meet the needs of survivors, their children, and even beloved family pets through programming and/or direct assistance can prove to be life-changing and even life-saving in many instances. Though each survivor’s journey looks different, many survivors have expressed how critical WC&S programs and services have been in their path to healing. 

“To me, WC&S means home. Although it is a temporary shelter, this place has become my first home. The staff here isn’t just staff–most of them are like family. They are the first group of people I can truly trust to turn to.”

At WC&S, we believe that everyone has the right to live free from abuse. This means  we meet survivors where they are to assist them on their journeys. Each year, Women’s Center & Shelter serves more than 7,500 survivors of domestic violence and their children. The generosity of our supporters and friends helps change lives and break the cycle of violence.  

“There is nothing better than feeling independent, strong, hopeful, and safe. I have strength and courage I didn’t even know I had. This experience has been life-changing.”

Join us in providing survivors of intimate partner violence with the gift of safety. Your support helps WC&S provide the care, support, and resources necessary for survivors and their children to begin healing and start again. We, along with the help and support of our community, strive to be a safe, reliable resource for all survivors as they continue on their path forward. 

 “I’m feeling positive, empowered, motivated, and determined. I left the center with an extended family. I am a survivor and I’m so happy.” 

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Story and Photography by Women’s Center & Shelter

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