Our Vision Statement
To PREVENT physical and sexual abuse
To PROTECT , educate and advocate for those who have been or are in danger of being abused, and
To EMPOWER all members of the community through education and training for every age group.
What began over decades ago as a hotline for battered women and sexual assault in a small corner office in the local YWCA, A Safe Place has grown into a QUALTIY, CONFIDENTIAL, AND COMPREHENSIVE program of services to victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and other crimes in Warren and Forest Counties since 1981.
The primary place of business for A Safe Place is located on the campus of the Warren State Hospital at 210 North Drive, Suite C, Warren, Pennsylvania. This campus is comprised of many other social service and governmental offices which creates a one-stop, easily accessible, client-friendly atmosphere and accessible through public transportation services. All services including our 24 Hr. Toll-Free hotline (726-1030 or 1-800-338-3460) are available 24 hrs./day/365 days per year include 24 Hr. Crisis Response (i.e. hospital, police, magistrate, etc.); 24 Hr. access to shelter or other safe housing; safety planning; supportive counseling, information/referral to other resources based on the needs of the victim/survivor, advocacy, and access to transportation resources.
Our shelter, housed in a confidential location, will accommodate up to 12 people at any one time, with multiple single bedrooms and a larger family bedroom. Individuals will usually have their own bedroom in which to have some privacy with all other rooms in the shelter being community style living. Individuals can stay in the shelter for up to 30 days. In the event that the individual does not feel safe in our shelter, our program staff will assist the individual in referring or accessing shelter services in another neighboring area or area of their choice.
Often times the victims/survivors that contact us for services are still living in an abusive situation . A Safe Place provides counseling, either in-person or via telephone, utilizing empowerment model which allows them to explore their options, build on their strengths and make their own choices. All this is done with their personal safety being paramount. It’s our goal that every victim/survivor leaves that phone call or our office with at least one or two strategies for safety in place.
In the Fall of 2001, to better meet the needs of our Forest County clients, A Safe Place opened a satellite office in Tionesta. The Forest Co. office has full-time office hours Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM-4:30 PM and is located at the rear of 623 Elm Street, Tionesta PA.
In 2001 and again since 2014, A Safe Place through its’ Crime Victims Program located in the Warren County Court House, has provided victims of all crimes, including those victims of juvenile offenders, the rights and services provided under our Commonwealths’ Victim Bill of Rights. The goal of this program is to restore any victim of crime back to their pre-crime status and ensure that their rights are upheld during the duration of their case through the criminal/juvenile justice process.
A Safe Place, in 2015, began its’ PREA (Prison Rape Elimination Act) program which gives sexual assault victims who are incarcerated an opportunity to participate in support counseling with our PREA Counselor either on the phone or in person.
A Safe Place assumed the Crime Victims Program in Forest County in January 2020 to provide crime victims in Forest County with quality services as outlined in the PA Crime Victims Bill of Rights as they navigate through the criminal and/or juvenile justice systems.
Throughout the last 25 years, in an effort to educate our young people and perhaps one day ‘break the cycle of violence’, A Safe Place has provided quality, research based prevention education programs in Warren and Forest Area schools, preschools, etc. Our extensive list of programs range from Personal Safety for preschoolers/kindergarten; Building Healthy Relationships for middle schools aged students to Internet Safety and Dating Violence programs in high schools as well as programs to professionals in our service area to include Mandated Reporter Training, Workplace Violence, Parents in the Know, etc.
All of the services and programs through A Safe Place are provided …FREE OF CHARGE.
Our Board of Directors
Board President: Barb Smelko
Board Vice President:
Board Treasurer: Jim Cheronis
Board Secretary: Lisa Lewis
Board Member – Forest County: Luke Alex
Board Member: Kim Angove
Board Member: Matt Franklin
Board Member: Kellie McClement
Board Member: Jim Cheronis
Board Member: Jennifer Bliss
Board Member: Nicole Petersen
Board Member: Phyllis Wright
Executive Director – Ex-Officio Board Member: Alexis Fetzeck