Hope Project December 2018 Newsletter

Find the Holiday lights!

Somewhere hidden in this month’s newsletter is the word “lights” out of context. Please respond with an email including the entire sentence that holds the hidden word for a chance to win a prize! All correct responses will be entered in a drawing, and the winner will be notified Dec. 17! Happy hunting!


Homelessness and Sexual Assault

As December is upon us, it is difficult to ignore the drop in temperature and the longer nights. While many of us are keeping warm with our cozy blankets and peppermint lattes, preparing for holidays with friends and families, there are those who cannot escape the cold or the dangers it brings. For those who remain unhoused during these months, the potential danger that they face is in the forefront of their minds. According to a study of homeless and marginally housed people, 32% of women, 27% of men, and 38% of transgendered persons reported either physical or sexual victimization in the previous year (Kushel et al., 2003).  

For those who experience mental health challenges, the rate of sexual assault is a staggering 97% over their lifetime.  (Goodman, Fels & Glen, 2006). This means that rape becomes a normative experience for people. A world where it would be uncommon for someone to have gone their entire life without experiencing a traumatic assault is difficult to imagine. Often times, these survivors struggle with the stigma around their lack of housing and face multiple barriers to reporting. The most victimized populations are often the ones left without a voice.

December 21st is the longest night of the year, and as such, it is fitting that there is a nationwide vigil held that night to commemorate the people we have lost due to homelessness and the dangers that arise therein. You are invited to join us here in Cowlitz County. Our vigil will be held at The Roxy Theater, 1101 Commerce Ave Longview, at 6 pm.


Hope Project’s Travel Tips

Planes, Trains and Automobiles!

During the Holiday season, many people are traveling to see family and friends. This can difficult thing for survivors, as often times their perpetrators are family members. Remember that no one has to participate in any functions that make them feel unsafe and that if they become uncomfortable, they do not need an excuse to leave. Everyone has the right to lights enjoy a safe environment. This includes children! Often times, children are expected to hug people at family functions, which can blur the lines of autonomy and personal choice. Our friends over at Buzzfeed have a handy infographic of 8 people your children don't have to hug.

The process of traveling can be stressful for anyone, especially survivors. It is always a good idea to have a safety plan in place when dealing with security checkpoints. No matter the means of travel, be it planes, trains, or automobiles; please check these resources to make your safety plan comprehensive.  

Refraining from posting pictures until you get home can seem agonizing. However, it is a good way of not letting people know that you are away from your home. Although the selfie at the airport (especially with the PDX carpet!) might be a crucial part of your holiday photo collection, waiting until you return to post it can deter someone who sees it as an opportunity to capitalize on a potentially empty home.

Above all, enjoy your holidays. From us to you, have a safe, warm, and loving season.


Looking for a new podcast?

Check out Believed on NPR

Need some new ideas for traditions for the season?


Click here for 10 Fun Christmas Traditions


What’s New at Hope Project?

New Advocates!!


Hope Project would like to introduce the newest addition to the team: Maya! With three full-time advocates, we now have more availability to meet with you or your loved ones. If you are curious about how an advocate can support you or your loved one, please feel free to contact us. We would love to meet with you!


360-703-3762 M-F 9 am to 5 pm

360-425-1176 After hours/Weekends


Connect With Hope Project

Facebook and Instagram:

Find, Follow and Share!!          


Support Groups

Self- Care workshop for Survivors

Email jesseniap@esshelter.com or call 360-703-3762 ext. 10                                  



Learn how you can make a difference!

Hope Project volunteers support survivors at the hospital or support advocates at the office with preparing for hospital calls and getting ready for groups and presentations

Email deborahi@esshelter.com for more information or call 360-703-3762 ext. 17.



Hope Project also provides free presentations on sexual violence awareness and Hope Project program information to schools, businesses, churches, and other organizations.

Email Calebl@esshelter.com or call 360-703-3762 ext. 16.



Deborah Idlett


The Hope Project 

Office: 360-703-3762 Ext. 17 

M-F 9am-5pm

After Hours & Weekend 360-425-1176

Fax: 360-703-6178

Find us on Facebook! 


Follow us on Instagram!