The Bexar County Family Justice Center is a unique organization that provides the services and resources necessary to assist victims of domestic violence and their families in one, centralized location. The Family Justice Center is the only facility of its kind in the State of Texas.
The goals of the Bexar County Family Justice Center include:
Domestic Violence can be defined as a pattern of behavior in any relationship that is used to gain or maintain power and control over an intimate partner or family member. Abuse includes physical, sexual, emotional, economic or psychological actions or threats. This includes any behaviors that frighten, intimidate, terrorize, manipulate, hurt, humiliate, blame, injure or wound someone. Domestic violence can happen to anyone of any race, age, sexual orientation, religion or gender. It can happy in any relationship and to anyone of any socioeconomic background or education.
In a legal context, Texas defines domestic violence as Family Violence, which is an act by a member of a family or household against another member of the family or household that is intended to result in physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or sexual assault or that is a threat that reasonably places the member in fear of imminent physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or sexual assault, but does not include defensive measures to protect oneself.
In 2004, the Depart of Justice - Office on Violence Against Women announced they were sponsoring a Family Justice Center Initiative Grant to help fund the planning and development of comprehensive domestic violence victim service and support centers.
Susan Reed saw the potential for having a positive and profound impact on the families in Bexar County dealing with domestic violence and began working to create a collaboration between the District Attorney's Office and other organizations such Bexar County Housing and Human Services, the San Antonio Police Department, University Health Systems, and the P.E.A.C.E. Initiative. By the time the grant application was completed and filed, Susan Reed had brought in over thirty partners from public, non-profit, and private sectors.
Bexar County was awarded the grant and the soon-to-be Bexar County Family Justice Center received initial funding. San Antonio was chosen as the location, one of fifteen cities nationwide and the only Texas location.
Since opening on August 1, 2005, the Bexar County Family Justice Center has grown in size and in services. Their partnership now consists of over forty members, and they serve 4,000 families a year.
In order to continue to provide assistance to families in need, the Family Justice Center needs continued support from Bexar County’s citizens. There are many ways to assist the Family Justice Center with their mission.
The Family Justice Center is supported by the time and effort of its board members, volunteers, and interns. Volunteers and interns offer assistance by being mentors, life coaches, leading special events, and helping with fundraising. To donate your time, visit the Board Member page or the Volunteer/Intern page, complete the appropriate application and return it the Family Justice Center.
The Family Justice Center needs household and personal items for their families and clients. Any new or gently used donations are appreciated! A full list of items can be found on the Family Justice Center Wish List page.
Used cellphones are refurbished and given to family violence victims in case of an emergency situation. It provides a measure of security in dangerous situations. To donate a cellphone, just bring the cellphone to the Family Justice Center at 527 N. Leona, San Antonio, Texas 78207.
As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, the Bexar County Family Justice Center Foundation welcomes tax-deductible contributions, grants, investments, and any other financial assistance. Donation information can be found on the Family Justice Center Monetary Donation page.
The Family Justice Center continues its history of being built from a partnership by joining forces with corporations, foundations, and individuals throughout Bexar County. Organizations and individuals provide much needed support in a variety of ways through a variety of services. Visit the Family Justice Center’s website Sponsor Page for details on what a sponsor does and how to become one.