Photo: Courtesy of John Eng
After survivors leave an abusive circumstance, they are generally able to stay in emergency shelters for up to six months. This may seem like a long time, but for many who must start from scratch to rebuild their lives post-abuse, it isn’t at all.
98% of domestic abuse cases involve some sort of financial abuse, and though monetary resources are available for survivors, they are limited. Finding new jobs, living situations and a renewed sense of agency can be challenging, but the Shine Foundation exists to help survivors get back on their feet. They partner with emergency shelters around the city to help financially educate survivors who have become homeless after leaving their abusers.
Jennifer Tan founded the nonprofit in 2014 in Baltimore, before bringing it to the city in 2016. Having volunteered with survivors in the past, she saw how many individuals struggled to regain autonomy because of financial struggles. Since not many options were available for her to refer them to, she decided to create one, herself.
Shine offers onsite classes to address everything from budgeting to credit repair to career building. Their programing has evolved with the needs of who they serve to ensure that they’re getting the most value out of the time. They also make sure to take a trauma-informed approach to their teaching and operate entirely through of volunteers who are dedicated to making a difference.
Since launching, the nonprofit has served over 400 survivors. Having left her previous job to fully commit to her mission, Tan is currently working on reaching even more survivors in need.
More about Shine Foundation can be found on their website.