We are stoked to announce the next organization we are supporting through The Ultraviolet Edge. The mission of Laura’s House is to change the social beliefs, attitudes and behaviors that perpetuate domestic violence, while creating a safe space to empower individuals and families affected by abuse.
Over the past 21 years, Laura’s House has provided shelter and support services to more than 4,300 battered women and children, as well as counseling, life skills education and legal assistance to more than 48,200 people. Laura’s House operates on the philosophy that domestic violence is a multidimensional social problem that is often cyclical in nature and that must be addressed through a range of programs and activities.
Wende and the Product Development team joined together to #strandagainstdv. They used the Electric Palette to pop streaks of purple in their hair to help raise awareness and support this great organization.
We had the chance to sit down with Margaret Bayston, CEO/Executive Director of Laura’s House to ask her a few questions about the organization and what inspires her.
Q: What is the mission of Laura’s House?
Our mission is to change the social beliefs, attitudes and behaviors that perpetuate domestic violence, while creating a safe space in which to empower individuals and families affected by abuse.
Q: What does the purple strand of hair that the team wears symbolize?
The purple strand symbolizes solidarity against domestic violence. It is a very powerful way to show that we are willing to stand up and speak out and show the world we are serious about ending the epidemic of domestic violence in our communities.
Q: What female figure would you say has inspired you the most?
My mother was the most inspirational woman in my life. She raised me and my four sisters to be strong, confident, compassionate women. One of the most amazing things about her was that each of us believed we were her favorite child! She taught us that we could accomplish our dreams if we planned accordingly and worked hard.
Q: Where did your passion for ending the silence of domestic violence come from?
I was quite ignorant about domestic violence until 1997, when I began volunteering at Laura’s House. I quickly realized that there were no socioeconomic boundaries to domestic violence and it was a devastating problem for those affected by it. The stories I hear from the clients, particularly the children, pulled at my heartstrings and stirred a passion for this population that I didn’t even know I had. I knew I had to seize the opportunity to be part of this life-changing organization. Clearly the solution to ending domestic violence is not an easy one, and there is a tremendous amount of work to be done. However, we are making great strides in educating our community, raising awareness and making services easier to access for anyone who needs them.
Q: What has working with Laura’s House taught you?
I am very fortunate to have the job that I do. I love building relationships with all kinds of people, and I get to do that every day to benefit the clients we serve and garner the trust of our stakeholders. I appreciate and respect the people I work with, and this has resulted in my being able to build a powerful, professional team of amazing individuals who are dedicated to our mission and vision. There is a synergy at Laura’s House that has to be seen to be believed. Each person is encouraged to understand the strong role model they are for our clients and that we all need to lead by example.
Q: If you could leave behind one thing as your legacy, what would it be?
I hope that I will be remembered at Laura’s House for empowering everyone to believe in themselves and the enormous possibilities that are just waiting for them to discover.
Q: What can we do to spread awareness for Laura’s House and help end the silence of domestic violence?
Taking part in our #StrandAgainstDV campaign and sharing with all your contacts is a great way to support Laura’s House and spread awareness. I encourage you to learn about domestic violence and share that knowledge with others. You may know someone who needs our assistance, and giving them information about how we can help them could be a lifesaver. Volunteering is very important to us; if you have the time, there are many ways to do this. Follow us on our social media pages and encourage others to do the same.
Q: What gives you an edge?
My strong, productive team at Laura’s House is what gives me an edge. No challenge is too big, and we pride ourselves on being easy to work with, empowering and effective in every aspect of what we do.