Today we’d like to introduce you to Cami Barnes.
Cami, before we jump into specific questions about the organization, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
My vision for this organization was inspired by my own experiences with surviving domestic violence. After leaving an abusive relationship, my two daughters and I were temporarily displaced but were able to move in with a good friend until I could save up the money for a new place. It was during that time of transition that the idea for creating an organization to help women in similar situations was born. It took several years to rebuild my life, and get the courage to start this organization, that I’d been given the vision for during one of the most difficult times of my life.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I began creating the structure for this organization in early 2019, with very little resources besides a giving heart and a faith that was stronger than anything that had yet to manifest. I researched, networked, built connections in the community and Safe Space Property Management has continued to grow. It took a lot of work, and I was initially funding everything out of my pocket. Securing the funding for our programs has been challenging but as our organization grows, things continue to fall into place. There are people in the community, friends and family that believe in our vision and support our mission. I’m grateful to be on this journey, having the platform to help those who need it most.
Please tell us about your organization.
The services we currently provide include short term emergency shelter, domestic violence awareness education/advocacy, case management, career coaching, fitness classes, and monthly support group meetings where participants and their children are served a free hot meal. We also have a program that provides domestic violence survivors with clothing, shoes, furniture and household donations called “Thriver’s Heart” to help as they transition out of shelters. One of the things I am the proudest of is our First Annual Holiday Toy Drive, which provided gifts to 42 children directly impacted by domestic violence. And a big accomplishment in 2020 is a new partnership with Extended Stay America in support of our short term emergency shelter program.
Safe Space Property Management’s ultimate goal is to purchase properties to utilize as transitional housing for survivors who may need up to six months to get financially stable and find permanent housing. What sets us apart from others is the variety of services we provide and that my team and I can provide these services from the perspective of having survived domestic violence ourselves.
What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Success for my organization will be continuing to grow, acquiring more funding to serve more people in the community. Success for me, in many ways, has already happened but continues to unfold. I have a wonderful husband, family, friends and supporters. Success has meant overcoming the things that were meant to destroy me. growing as a woman, and as a person. Healing from trauma, learning to forgive myself for what I didn’t know and evolving from a state of surviving into thriving. Now my passion lies in teaching others to do the same.
- Website: www.safespacepropertymanagement.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @Safe_Space_ATL
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/safespacepropertymanagement
- Twitter: @SafeSpaceATL