The YWCA offers a variety of groups to assist survivors and non-offending family members with healing from the trauma of sexual assault. Clients are able to challenge their feelings of isolation and receive support from peers by participating in group counseling. While specific groups may vary from site to site, groups are typically offered to adult survivors of child sexual abuse, child and teen survivors of sexual violence, and parents. Groups may focus on a specific theme (boundaries, safety, empowerment), may utilize a form of expressive therapy (photography, poetry, art) to engage clients in the healing process, or focus on providing information about sexual assault/abuse and coping skills. Group services are offered regularly across all of our service locations.

Current Support Groups:

Creating a Story Through Art: From Shame to Self-Love (English Flyer)

YWCA Metropolitan Chicago is hosting an 8-week group for adult survivors of sexual assault/abuse who are interested in exploring themes of shame and self-love. In a safe, non-judgmental, and supportive space, join other survivors in collaboratively creating a story about shame and self-love through words and visual art. No art experience necessary.

Where: YWCA RISE Center
When:  Wednesdays, March 13th to May 1st, 6:00 PM – 7:45 PM
Cost: Free

This group is open to survivors of all sexual orientations and all gender identities. If you are interested in joining, contact Trissa Dodson at 312.762.2730 or Maeve Raphelson at 312.762.2746. Spots are limited. Please RSVP by March 7th, 2019.

Adolescent Group: Self-Care and Coping Skills (English Flyer)

YWCA Metropolitan Chicago is hosting an 8-week group for adolescents impacted by sexual violence, ages 15 to 18. This group will be a safe, supportive space where you can join other individuals in:

  • Learning effective ways to cope with stressors
  • Practicing coping mechanisms to reduce stress
  • Creating a self-care plan for future stressors

Members will be empowered to discuss, develop and practice effective coping skills through the use of creative expression.

Where: YWCA Patterson & McDaniel Family Center
When:  Thursdays, March 28th to May 16th, 6:30 PM – 8:00 PM
Cost: Free

If you are interested in attending, contact Cinthya Valladares at (630) 580-8325. All interested individuals must complete an intake.

Open Art Studio (English Flyer)

YWCA Metropolitan Chicago will be hosting a weekly art space for adult survivors of sexual violence. The Open Art Studio is a safe, supportive space where you can socialize, make art, listen to music, talk, laugh, and create community.

Participants will have the opportunity to:

  • Create community and connection with other survivors
  • Engage in arts and crafts activities to promote self-care
  • Reduce feelings of isolation by engaging in a casual social activity

No art experience necessary! Art supplies will be provided. If you would like to bring your own materials or project (such as sewing, crocheting, scrapbook, coloring books, digital/computer art projects, etc.) please confirm with the facilitator beforehand to ensure we have means to accommodate your project.

Where: YWCA RISE Center
When:  Thursdays, March 28th to June 6th, 2:30 PM – 4:30 PM
Cost: Free

If you are interested in attending, please contact Trissa Dodson at 312-762-2730.

Más Fuertes Juntos: Grupo para Padres/Cuidadores Inmigrantes (Spanish Flyer)

YWCA Metropolitan Chicago los invita a un grupo creativo en español para padres y cuidadores inmigrantes. El grupo será enfocado en las experiencias de inmigración y cómo estas afectan el cuidado y apoyo de sus hijos que han sobrevivido el abuso sexual.

El grupo ofrecerá un espacio seguro de apoyo para que padres puedan reflexionar sobre sus experiencias, compartir recursos y utilizar medios creativos para procesar temas como:

  • Los factores estresantes en el ambiente político actual
  • El impacto que tienen las diferentes interpretaciones culturales del abuso sexual sobre las familias
  • Los retos de navegar procesos legales siendo un padre inmigrante
  • La separación familiar debido a cuestiones de inmigración y/o abuso sexual infantil
  • Las emociones difíciles relacionadas con el abuso sexual infantil
  • El manejo del autocuidado

Podemos acomodar hasta 8 personas. Por favor de confirmar su participación lo más pronto que pueda.

Donde: YWCA RISE Center
Cuando:  Los jueves, 12:00pm-1:30pm
Fechas del grupo seran determinadas pronto
Costo: Gratis

Si le gustaría participar, por favor de contactar a Gabriela Alvarado (312) 762-2732 o Kelin Hall
(312) 229-7244.

Stronger Together: Group for Immigrant Parents and Caretakers (English Flyer)

YWCA Metropolitan Chicago invites you to a creative processing group in Spanish for immigrant parents and caregivers. The group will be focused on immigration experiences and how these affect the care and support of children who have survived sexual abuse.

The group will offer a safe, supportive space for parents to reflect on their experiences, share resources and use creative means to process issues such as:

  • The stressors faced in the current political climate
  • The impact of different cultural interpretations of sexual abuse on families
  • The challenges of navigating legal processes as an immigrant parent
  • Family separation due to immigration issues and/or child sexual abuse
  • Difficult emotions related to child sexual abuse
  • The management of self-care

We can accommodate up to 8 people. Please confirm your participation as soon as you can.

Where: YWCA RISE Center
When:  Thursdays, 12:00pm-1:30pm
Start date to be determined
Cost: Free

If you’d like to participate, please contact Gabriela Alvarado (312) 762-2732 or Kelin Hall
(312) 229-7244.

For more information on support groups being offered at a Chicago area location, please call (312) 733-2102.