Who We Are

Sylvia’s Place is Allegan County’s only domestic violence safe house. We offer secure shelter and supportive services free of charge to survivors of abuse and their dependent children. With the support of private community donors in addition to local, state and federal funding we have provided over 56,732 safe bednights to women and children fleeing domestic abuse. We are honored to serve those that make the life changing decision to flee an abusive relationship and are here to provide the resources to empower victims to achieve survivor status.

Sylvia's Place is a supporting agency that believes in the inherent value of every human being. We offer residential services to those seeking a safe place to stay and non-residential services to those that have obtained secure housing away from the abuser. How can we help you? If you or someone you know are experiencing domestic violence please don't wait...call today.

Our Mission

Our mission is to create and to sustain a safe environment that empowers women and children through preventative education and advocacy, which promotes stronger individuals, families, and communities.

Our History

Sylvia’s Place has assisted survivors of domestic abuse since 1996, following the violent death of Sylvia Allen. Sylvia lost her battle with domestic violence and fell victim to the hands of her perpetrator. Her death proposed the realization that an escape for those fleeing abuse was necessary. Our agency is dedicated to the memory of Sylvia Allen (Click here to read her story) and exists to provide a safe environment for women and children fleeing similar circumstances.

Our Success Stories

Beatrice is a 50-year-old woman from Hamilton who left an abusive relationship after a long-term marriage. “Now that my family is grown and on their own, I need to take care of me”. In the five weeks she was with us, we helped her file a PPO, consult with West Michigan Legal Services about a divorce, find a job (she hadn’t been employed for years), and move into her own subsidized apartment.

  • Brooklyn came to us with her 4 year old son fleeing from another state due to the extreme lethality of her domestic violence situation. The horror of her abuse left her scarred not only emotionally but physically. Brooklyn had tolerated the abuse for years until the abuser progressed into the degradation of her children. During her stay at Sylvia’s Place, Brooklyn began seeing the Adult Therapist and was soon able to find full time employment and transportation. Brooklyn successfully relocated and was able to reunite with her oldest son and will be starting his first year of college in a home free of domestic violence.

  • Darla is a 25-year-old Allegan County woman who left the father of her three-year-old daughter after the abusive behavior began escalating. She was at shelter for 34 days during which she earned a promotion at her established job. We referred her to a program at Work First called the Work Force Investment Act, sponsored by the Michigan Department of Career Development. She is interested in pursuing an RN degree and this program will provide her the opportunity to do this. We referred her to Allegan Crisis Center, CWIT, Project Hope and ACRDC for supportive services because DHS was unable to provide much help because she makes too much money to qualify for help, but not enough to make it on her own. She has since been able to get a place of her own, get her daughter enrolled in head start and gone back to school herself. Both her job and school work are going well.

  • Amanda is a 27 year old mother of 2 who was repeatedly beaten by her husband of 5 years. After realizing the toll her lifestyle was taking on her small children, she reached out to Sylvia's Place for help. She came to our shelter with no money, clothing, or dignity. After a few weeks of case management, counseling, and dedication, she was back on her feet. Through our services, she obtained housing, a part time job, and gained self worth. Although she was scared to walk through our doors, she left a totally different person. The transformation we witnessed in such a small amount of time was amazing...it makes us feel blessed to have the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of many!

  • Lucy is an Allegan County resident who had many challenging circumstances, primarily because she is not a US citizen and will not qualify to apply for citizenship for another 3 years. Besides language, cultural barriers and isolation, she faced legal difficulties. She was abused by the family she married into and was forced to work for them without pay. She was befriended by a neighbor who helped her and her four-year-old daughter come to Sylvia’s Place. When her husband realized what had happened, he accused her of embezzlement and she was arrested. She would like to move out of state and live near her family; legal issues prevent this. One of her biggest challenges is that she does not qualify for any social services because of her lack of citizenship. She stayed at the shelter much past the typical 30 days because she had no other options. After she began receiving child support, we were able to help her find affordable housing. Lucy and her daughter are currently thriving in their new home and are very happy and healthy. One year and one month after leaving our safe house, Lucy has informed us that she has prevailed in her legal battles against her ex-husband, with the help of an attorney that we helped her find, and she is now able to move to the state where she chooses to live and be near her family who will provide support for her.

  • Get Involved

    Monetary Donations

    Sylvia's Place offers our services free of charge. We depend on grants and your community support to offer services and provide a safe place for those fleeing domestic abuse.

    Click here to make a donation.

    Item Donations

    It is our goal that when one of our families resides in shelter or moves into independent living they have access to basic needs for a fresh start on a lifestyle free from violence.

    Click here to view our wishlist.

    Volunteer

    Being a home environment, there are many opportunities at Sylvia's Place for those willing to be a part of helping our women and children gain back their confidence and independence.

    Click here to volunteer.

    Our Services

    • Residential
      Services

      • Safe Shelter
      • 24 Hour Crisis Line
      • Safety Planning
      • Food, Clothing, Hygiene Products
      • Strength Based Case Management
      • Individual & Family Counseling
      • Housing Referrals
      • Employment Search
    • Non-Residential Services

      • Legal Advocacy
      • Personal Protection Orders
      • Court Accompaniment
      • Housing Referrals
      • Crime Victims Compensation
      • Domestic Violence Education
      • Counseling
      • Victim Support

    News, Updates, and Information

    Check out the latest right here!

    Community Resources

    Contact Us

    We would be delighted to speak to your organization to explain our services and how we can work together to make a difference. We can present educational opportunities for the community and private organizations and individuals about domestic violence. We are also ready and willing to speak to you with any questions you may have. If you or someone you know are experiencing domestic violence please do not hesitate to contact us for any reason...we are here to help!

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