June 16, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Project S.A.R.A.H. Takes Action During Coronavirus

Over the last several weeks, Project S.A.R.A.H. clinicians have been sharing reflections, thoughts and strategies with you and the rest of the community around keeping our sanity and our relationships intact while grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic. Coping with abrupt school closures, making your first Pesach at home, concerns with possible hospitalization and loved ones contacting the virus, are some of the challenges we are all facing that feel overwhelming and nearly insurmountable.

For all the hardship, upheaval and uncertainty crises bring, they can also provide opportunities for growth. This is a reality Project S.A.R.A.H. has been embracing as our team works harder than ever to help keep our community safe at home—and support those who aren’t.

Our clinicians have been collaborating remotely to discuss the best ways to address new needs that are arising as families remain quarantined. For those who might be at greater risk now for domestic and sexual abuse, clinicians have made their schedules more flexible to meet for virtual sessions. This allows clients to find private and safe times to speak openly.

Whether meeting with adults, children or families, we understand that clients’ emotional state might be chaotic, lonely, depressed, anxious or all of the above. The Project S.A.R.A.H. staff has been exploring research as it surfaces and has been keeping up on professional development training regarding the impact COVID-19 on more vulnerable populations. This helps us better understand how the community may be experiencing this pandemic. Clinicians come to every session prepared to provide grief counseling, safety planning, parenting psychoeducation and crisis intervention.

We’re also developing innovative ways to reach and connect with community members who aren’t yet familiar with Project S.A.R.A.H. resources. Free online support groups, held Sunday through Thursday nights, provide a safe space for the community to navigate COVID-19-related issues. Our new Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) group helps participants address issues by focusing on acceptance and staying in the present moment. For those experiencing escalating conflict or abuse at home, these groups offer an anonymous first point of contact from which people can learn how to access legal guidance, referrals and no-cost psychotherapy.

We never want a lack of technology to serve as an additional barrier to finding help. Project S.A.R.A.H. has partnered with local donors to obtain and distribute tablets and laptops to the community. These devices, which are still available for loan, are geared toward alleviating isolation among those in unsafe home environments, whether they are used to connect individuals to a virtual therapist session, to legal or other resources or to a trusted and supportive social network.

For more immediate guidance and connection, our support line can be reached at (973)777-7638 x154. Therapists are available for clients and members of the community who feel unsafe in their environment due to domestic violence and sexual abuse. For those clients, we have provided an emergency line: (862)210-0673.

As we propel ourselves into the next few weeks and months, we will continue assessing how to utilize our strengths, resources and skills to better serve the community. To support the critical work of this program please join Project’s S.A.R.A.H.’s virtual breakfast on May 17, 2020. For more information or to join our breakfast, visit us online at www.projectSARAH.org, Facebook or www.instagram.com/projectsarah_nj.


Paige and Cara are clinicians on the Project S.A.R.A.H. team. They facilitate prevention training and offer supportive therapy for those affected by domestic violence and sexual abuse.

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