You need to know…

Join in supporting Courage Connection with Michelle’s Bridal and Tuxedo

Michelle’s Bridal and Tuxedo would love your help during our month of giving!

For a donation amount of $20, you could give the entire contents of this bag to Courage Connection. It is made up of all women’s hygiene products.

It includes:

1 body lotion
1 body wash
1 deodorant
1 set of 2 Loofas
1 package of tampons
1 package of panty liners
1 package of maxi pads

The bag itself is a donation item from our owner Michelle Schweighart!

Our goal is to donate 50 bags to Courage Connection and we need your help to reach our goal!  Please give us a call at 217-384-7914 or swing by the shoppe during store hours, if you would like to donate!

Connections Store Closing

Connections, located in Lincoln Square, has been the resale store and the donation drop off location for Courage Connection since 2008. We have served both our clients and the public from this location

After much review and in-depth discussion with our Board of Directors , a decision has been made to close the store operations of Connection by June 30, 2019. As of Wednesday, May 15, we will no longer accept any donations of goods that would normally be sold in our store. A store wide clearing sale began on that date with discounted sales of the on hand inventory and eventually store fixtures. The store opened Wednesday morning with signage in place announcing closing sale.

Donations off our wish list for clients (personal care, baby care, household care as listed on our website) will continue to be taken at Connections until the store location is closed.  New drop off locations of those items collected for use by our clients will be announced shortly.

While this is a sad time for our Connections staff and customers, it is necessary to continue to provide the highest quality in direct client services for those individuals facing Domestic Violence in our community. We will be very clear in any marketing, message and communication that the operations of the resale store location is closing and NOT the agency.

Thank You,  Alpha Chi Omega UIUC

A huge thank you to the woman of Alpha Chi Omega on the University of Illinois campus in Urbana-Champaign. Domestic Violence awareness is their philanthropic focus and our agency, Courage Connection is their selected agency focus of support. From volunteerism in our retail store, Connections, to their financial support, these future leaders of our world rock.

For the record, they donated over $22,000 this past school year!For more information of Alpha Chi Omega UIUC




In honor of  Women’s History Month

As we celebrate Women’s History Month we look to our past to see how far we have come. We know that victimization though domestic violence transcends the boundaries of gender and sexual orientation. However, women are historically more often victims of domestic violence, and are more likely to be physically abused than men.

Throughout history, women have been seen as the weaker of the sexes in most societies.  The systematic oppression of women has been understood, accepted, and even written to law. This fostered, a world in which women have been seen as products and objects for men. This has allowed for the physical punishment of women by their husbands and other male members of their families. In the past, these laws have given males legal protection from the consequences of their actions. Even in the beginning of the 1900’s, the Supreme Court refused women the right to prosecute their husbands for physical abuse.  However, in the late 1800’s, Maryland was the first state to pass a law that made beating your wife a crime, which was punishable by 40 lashes or a year in jail. It would take many years for effective change to manifest throughout the US.

In the late 1960s/Early 1970s; the women’s movement of the 1960’s and the anti-rape movement of the 1970’s encouraged survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault to speak out, leading to the formation of the domestic violence movement and the formation of women’s crisis centers and hotlines. Grassroots organizing efforts began transforming public consciousness and women’s lives. “We will not be beaten” became the mantra of women across the country organizing to end domestic violence. This theme stems from the notion that women face brutality from their husbands and indifference from social institution.

In 1971, A Woman’s Place (AWP) opened in Urbana as the first battered women’s shelter in Illinois and possibly in the US. This shelter, operated by A Woman’s Fund, was started by four women living cooperatively and was a base of community volunteer efforts. It operated as an independent agency until 2010.

Meanwhile, in the early 1980’s another group of determined citizens and social service providers came together to address CU’s lack of homelessness facilities for women and children. The Women’s Emergency Shelter of Champaign County (WESCC) opened in June, 1985. WESCC became The Center for Women in Transition and added additional shelters and a resale store to its operations.

Years later in 1994, the foundation of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) was set in place when Congress passed legislation focused on improving community response and effectiveness of the legal system for victims of abuse, with further protections being added in 2000, 2005, and 2013.

Understanding domestic violence is the leading cause homelessness among women. In 2010, The Center for Women in Transition merged with A Woman’s Place, thereby ensuring that life-saving domestic violence services would continue to be available in Champaign County. This alliance created a powerful continuum of services, connecting women in need to everything from emergency shelter to affordable permanent housing through one agency.

Today, Courage Connection celebrates the legacy of its parent organizations while focusing on a strong future for our clients and our community. As a member of the Champaign-Urbana Continuum of Care, the Illinois Coalition Against Domestic Violence, and other community collaborations, Courage Connection is committed to identifying and addressing the growing and changing needs for domestic violence services in our community. Courage Connection helps ANYONE affected by domestic violence, no matter of gender or sexual orientation. Our goal is to continue to educate on the dynamics of intimate partner abuse as well as create a societal change toward healthy relationships.