Mission

Our mission is to lead Latina victims of domestic violence to safety, empower them to live free of violence and reach and sustain their full potential. We pursue our mission by raising community awareness, engaging in activism and providing culturally competent services.

History

The Violence Intervention Program (VIP) was established in 1984 as a program of the East Harlem Council of Human Services. It was formed by Black and Latinx survivors and organizers who were actively involved in the anti-violence movements during the late 1970s and early 1980s. These women recognized the lack of culturally specific survivor services available at the time, so they created community-based interventions for intimate partner violence and sexual assault. They also established networks of support to address basic needs, conducted grassroots education campaigns and advocated for culturally responsive programming, envisioning a supportive environment for Latinx survivors of all races, nationalities and heritage, reflecting their cultures and experiences.

In 1989, VIP grew and became an independent nonprofit, becoming NYC’s first and only culturally specific organization dedicated to aiding Latinx survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Since then, VIP has supported thousands of survivors and their children, standing as a testament to its ongoing commitment.

Explore how VIP supports survivors, partners with communities to combat domestic and sexual violence, and, above all, consider joining the movement to make a meaningful impact.

VIP is Founded

Founded by Beth Richie and Elsa Rios in 1984 as a program of EHCHS and focused on three key areas: providing bilingual and bi-cultural direct services to survivors of domestic and sexual violence, offering community education for cultural change in the Latinx community, and engaging in community organizing by inviting hospitals, police, and legal services programs to address domestic violence with culturally relevant strategies.
1984

Shelter Established

Established Moriviví Safe Dwelling Program, the first domestic violence shelter for immigrant Latinxs in NYC.
1988

Doors Open at Harlem Office & New Hotline Established

Became an independent nonprofit and established its first office in East Harlem to provide community-based

Expanded services to include a bilingual hotline and advocacy work.

1989

Doors Open in the Bronx Community

VIP opened a second non-residential office to serve its community in the Bronx.

2001

Transitional Housing Program Opens

Casa Sandra opens its doors as a transitional housing program dedicated to aiding survivors of Domestic Violence.

2005

Doors Open in Queens Community

VIP opened a third non-residential office to serve adults, children, and youth in Queens.

2006

Community Outreach Begins

Introduced the Promotoras initiative, assembling a group of survivors and former clients to facilitate outreach and engage in meaningful dialogues with the community, based on their personal experiences.

2009

Economic Justice Program Launched

Established the Economic Justice Program, an innovative and culturally proficient approach to support survivors who face challenges in finding traditional employment, especially immigrants.

2010

Sexual Violence Program Opens

With support from the Fund for Me Too Movement and Allies at the New York Women’s Foundation, in collaboration with Tarana Burke, VIP opens the Sexual Violence Project aimed at providing support for immigrant and spanish speaking survivors of sexual violence with experiences of complex trauma.

Launched Brightly East Harlem (now Up and Go), a worker-owned cleaning cooperative comprised of 19 worker-owners providing residential and commercial cleaning services.

Hosts Mujeres, Migration and Money, our first ever symposium on economic stability for immigrant survivors.

2019

Operations During Pandemic

During the COVID-19 pandemic, VIP operated at full service providing emergency resources to survivors and their families, connecting survivors to relief efforts made available through government, philanthropy, and/ or other nonprofits, and promotoras distributed materials in public areas.
2020

4 Exciting New Programs Open

VIP partners with the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender Based Violence to launch the Home+ program into the Bronx community, offering survivors home alarm systems and security-related repairs to keep them safe in their homes and prevent homelessness due to domestic violence.

Established the Child and Adolescent Program to offer clinical support to children and teens aged 3-18 who have experienced or witnessed domestic, sexual, and community violence, disasters, traumatic grief, medical trauma, and refugee trauma. This is the first therapeutic and trauma prevention programming offered to children in VIP’s history, and establishes a unique clinic culturally tailored for the needs of Latinx youth.

Established the Rapid Re-Housing Program to prevent homelessness and/or reduce the time spent in shelter for survivors and their families.

Strengthened the Community Engagement Program with three main components: the Promotoras initiative, and digital education and outreach.

2021

40th Anniversary

Violence Intervention Program celebrates its 40th anniversary of empowering Latinx survivors and building stronger communities.

2024-2025
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