Frequently Asked Questions

How is Safe Passage Funded?

Safe Passage’s annual budget is currently just under $3 million. Approximately 89% of our funding is received through Federal, State, and Local grants. The remaining 11% is primarily raised through fundraising and local support.


What percentage of donated dollars goes to programs and services?

No survivor who comes to Safe Passage is ever asked to pay for any of the critical services we provide. 86% of the Safe Passage budget goes directly to services for our clients.  Safe Passage strives to be transparent and efficient in the use of our funding to provide the lifesaving services our clients and community need.


Where will Safe Passage be located?

Safe Passage will be located at the intersection of South 2nd Street and Franklin in DeKalb.  Safe Passage will also continue to have satellite locations in Sandwich and Sycamore to ensure clients throughout our county can access our shelter and support services.


Why is Safe Passage’s location no longer confidential?

We’ve received many questions about the public location of our new building and we’re so grateful our community is concerned about the safety of survivors.  Our board and staff put a lot of time and research behind the decision to move away from a confidential location – and many shelters are doing the same! This is not uncommon.

Research has shown that a public location is much less shaming to survivors, many of whom have been isolated for years. We know many survivors have very limited time to escape an abusive partner and with a public location, these survivors may be able to find us easier. We understand that risk still exists and our enhanced security ensures our clients and our staff stay as safe as possible.


Which victims come to Safe Passage?

The majority of our clients come from DeKalb County.  Our clients have experienced domestic violence, sexual assault, or often both. We also serve the loved ones of abuse victims. We serve clients of all ages, including children, in our shelter program and our non-residential services. Abuse and violence are not limited by gender or sexual orientation and Safe Passage serves clients of all genders, including men, boys, and nonbinary or gender nonconforming survivors.

Safe Passage strives to be a safe and welcoming place for all who need our services. We serve all in need and will not tolerate discrimination based on race, ability, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity or any other protected status.


Once someone comes to Safe Passage, what services are provided?

Clients at Safe Passage fleeing violence often utilize our emergency shelter or long-term transitional housing. This allows those clients access to a safe home as well as support obtaining their goals (housing, schooling, childcare, etc.) along the path to healing. Our residential clients AND clients who do not stay in our housing program also have access to free and confidential counseling, legal support, and case management.

Safe Passage also provides community education, training, and outreach for students, community members, and professionals as well as a Partner Abuse Intervention Program intended to assist abusive individuals in changing their harmful behaviors.


How long can someone stay at Safe Passage? Where do they go after?

Each client’s experience at Safe Passage is tailored to their or their family’s needs. Some clients stay for a few days, some stay for weeks or months.  Clients in our long-term housing program stay with us for up to two years in a supportive living environment as they plan their next steps to healing.

Many of our clients leave our shelter to stay with family or friends or to move into safe housing they have obtained during their time with us. Our close partnerships with the DeKalb County Housing Authority allow us to provide extra support to clients as they look to find a safe future in our community.  Some survivors do return to abusive homes or abusive relationships.  We are committed to support survivors in finding safety no matter what future decisions they may make and remind survivors that we will always be here when they need a safe place to return.


How can I obtain a copy of Safe Passage’s most recent audited 990 or more information about programs and services?

Safe Passage is committed to transparency with our supporters, clients, and community.  To obtain a copy of Safe Passage’s audited financial reports or other information about our services, please contact our business line at 815-756-7930.


What does it mean to “turn people away”?

Safe Passage will never leave a client without support or safety.  If our shelter does not have adequate space to house a survivor or their family, we will work with shelters and programs outside our county to find and connect a survivor with a safe place.  Our non-residential survivor support programs are available to any survivor in need, regardless of our ability to provide shelter.

With the larger shelter housing our new building will provide, we are confident we will be able to adequately house all survivors in need of support in our county.