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OREM — A local business celebrated the season of giving by partnering with a nonprofit to create a pop-up shop for women seeking assistance and support at The Refuge, a shelter for women and children.
The Lehi-based business, Jane, has partnered with the Fight Against Domestic Violence over several years to bring pop-up shops to a number of its partners.
Jane is a boutique marketplace and e-commerce platform that features online sellers and brick-and-mortar shops. The company was founded in 2011 and is woman-based, with 98% of its sellers being women.
"We really look to partner with organizations that are doing something that we believe in, which is empowering women and bettering their lives. And this holiday season, we wanted to make the spirits brighter for women needing support," said Kathleen Shaffer, Jane communication director.
The company donated over 300 items of clothing, outerwear and accessories at the event. Stylists were also featured to help the women shop free of charge for themselves and loved ones. Any remaining items will be donated to other domestic violence shelters throughout Utah.
"We have child care provided for their children so they can take some time to really get to know the items, find their size, and they're able to shop for not only themselves but all of their loved ones, which can be hard to do in a time of crisis," said Shaffer.
The option to pick out clothing for themselves is important for survivors of domestic violence.
"Oftentimes women and children will arrive at a shelter with nothing because they are fleeing here in crisis and it's really hard to live in the communal living in a shelter," explained Brooke Muir, Fight Against Domestic Violence executive director. "They've experienced a lot of trauma so to have the opportunity and the autonomy to actually do their own shopping can be something new."
"When we talk about domestic violence, what we're really talking about is about power and control and that can be exhibited in a multiple multitude of ways. So it's not just physical; it's emotional, psychological, and 99% of victims experience financial abuse. So, I have heard stories of survivors who literally were not allowed to go to the grocery store without their partner," Muir added.
Times of stress can directly increase the rates of domestic violence and often the holidays create an uptick in crisis calls, said Muir. She encouraged anyone who may be experiencing domestic violence to reach out or to look for the signs.
"I want them to know that they are not alone. And oftentimes they have been isolated and feel like they have no one to reach out to. But to find that one person that they feel comfortable with in expressing their situation (makes them feel like they are not alone)," said Muir.
Domestic violence resources
Help for people in abusive relationships can be found by contacting: