The phone lines at CHOICES have been ringing off the hook since the organization printed an advertisement in the Columbus Dispatch.
“Calls increased by 100 once that ad ran,” said Sandy Allen, CHOICES Deputy Executive Director.
It means more domestic violence victims are seeking help.
The ad was not front-and-center in the paper, but it was big enough to let victims know they no longer have to hide.
“Doing that ad, we've never done that before. We just relied on word of mouth or education opportunities were given - so we're kind of being more aggressive in reaching out,” explained Allen.
Calls have increased from 188 in January to 285 in March. Visits to the CHOICES website also increased.
CHOICES is even reaching out through social media with their own Facebook page.
It’s another progressive move for an agency that's served in the shadows for more than 30 years.
The phone hotline is operated 24 hours a day, but the new demand is creating challenges.
Officials said there are longer waiting lists and appointments sometimes take longer to set up.
“We're really trying to let folks know to be patient and we’re trying to raise more money,” said Allen.
CHOICES says that more money means there can be more awareness as the agency tries to get domestic violence into the everyday mindset.
CHOICES is the only agency in central Ohio to operate an actual shelter for domestic violence victims and families.