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Domestic Violence Victim Advocacy

Bolton Refuge House, Inc serves victims and survivors of domestic violence. We are there for every step, providing temporary emergency sheltering, individual advocacy, mental health counseling, and support groups. Call our 24/7 hotline if you need our assistance. All of our services come at no cost to the primary or secondary victim. 



This is not a complete list of services we provide. If you need our assistance or have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us.

24/7 Hotline: If you have questions, need assistance, need advocacy or even emotional support, our hotline is completely free and confidential. Talk with a trained victim advocate who will listen without judgement and answer your questions on victim resources, legal processes, and more. Call the hotline here: 715-834-9578

One-to-one Advocacy: Our victim advocates offer emotional support and information, as well as help finding resources and filling out paperwork. Personal advocacy offers victims information about the options available to them, and supports victims’ decision-making. 

Legal Advocacy: One of the challenges faced by many survivors is that you are thrust into the legal system through no fault of your own. We will answer survivors' questions on restraining orders, family law issues, and more. Click here to learn more about our legal advocacy services.

Emergency Shelter: We offer emergency shelter to individuals in imminent danger of violence in their current living situation. We are the only emergency shelter agency in Eau Claire, WI with support staff available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Each person's situation is unique, so anyone seeking shelter meets with an advocate to talk about their individual needs and learn about their options. Just like all of our services, emergency sheltering comes at no cost to the victim.

Support Groups: One of the most important benefits of participating in a support group is a decreased sense of isolation - a feeling experienced by many who have suffered trauma. In group, feelings are expressed, validated by others, and accepted as normal. Participants learn to regain previous levels of coping or develop more effective coping skills. For information on support group offerings, follow us on Facebook or contact us.

Mental Health Counseling: Survivors of domestic violence can experience psychological and emotional effects as a result of their assault, including depression, panic attacks, PTSD, and dissociation. These effects can be hard to manage on your own, which is why we have a mental health counselor on staff. Contact us to learn more about this service. 

Community Education/Prevention: We are dedicated to preventing sexual violence in our community through education. Jump to our section on community education and prevention to learn more about our efforts. 


Glossary & fAQ

Domestic Violence: Defined as "violent or aggressive behavior within the home, typically involving the violent abuse of a spouse or partner." 

Domestic Abuse: A range of abuse within a home, usually involving a spouse or partner. This includes emotional, verbal, sexual, psychological, and financial abuse, in addition to the physical violence often associated with this term.

Intimate Partner Violence: abuse or aggression that occurs in a romantic relationship. “Intimate partner” refers to both current and former spouses and dating partners. Learn more about it here.

Emotional Abuse: A way to control a person through blame, manipulation, embarrassment, isolation, or other tactics. Read more about it here.

Financial Abuse: The use of finances to control the victim, such as not allowing access to shared bank accounts or preventing the victim from working. Read more about it here. And here's a great guide from Bankrate to getting back on your feet after financial abuse. It is a thorough look at what you can do to recover, starting from  

Gaslighting: Form of emotional abuse where the abuser manipulates the victim into doubting their own sanity or perception of events. Read more about it here

Love Bombing: A tactic where the abuser uses excessive affection, admiration, gifts, to manipulate the victim into something, often into starting or staying in the relationship. Read more about it here

Restraining Order: According to the Wisconsin Department of Justice, "A restraining order is a court order that orders someone not to hurt you, to stay away from you, move out of the house, have no contact with you, or stop harassing you." Visit our page on restraining orders.

Education & Prevention

These are just some of our programs focused on prevention and education in the community. For more information on these programs, visit our community education page.

Safe Dates Program

The Safe Dates Program works to prevent sexual violence and dating violence amongst teen and youth. A trained advocate will present and facilitate a conversation in the classroom to educate kids about healthy relationships and dating.

Healthy LGBTQ+ Relationships

This event is for anyone who wants to learn about healthy relationships- whether they are romantic relationships, friendships, relationships with family, relationships with coworkers, or any other type of relationship. Learn more about it here. Learn more about our LGBTQ+ services here.

Survivor Stories

As of April of 2022, we have started collecting stories of our own to post anonymously onto our Survivor Stories Wall. To view the wall, or to share your experience, click here. You can include as much or as little information as you'd like and we won't include your name unless you request it - you are in charge of your story. 
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