ICSEW Drive Supports Victims of Domestic Violence, Local Businesses Amid Pandemic


ICSEW logo

Updated on December 9, 2020

The Interagency Committee of State Employed Women (ICSEW) is sponsoring a gift card and supplies drive for organizations that provide services and resources to women and individuals who are victims of domestic violence. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, police departments and civic groups are reporting a spike in domestic violence cases. Mandated stay-at-home orders have put victims in close proximity to their abusers.

“This is an opportunity to help empower Washingtonians who are taking the difficult steps to protect the wellbeing of themselves and their families. These are strong, brave individuals, and to be a part of bettering their lives falls in line with so many of ICSEW’s values,” said ICSEW Public Outreach Co-chair, Jasmine Pippin-Timco.   

The drive started Oct. 1, the beginning of National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The drive will run until April 30, 2021, with a possible extension through summer if needs remain dire. Recipients of the gift cards so far are the following organizations:

“This is a great opportunity to make a difference twice with one gesture as many local businesses are struggling to stay afloat through this pandemic,” said ICSEW Public Outreach Co-chair, Debra Lefing. “Donating a gift card helps a domestic violence survivor obtain meals or supplies and gives a much-needed boost to a business owner.”

How to Participate

If you are an individual who would like to donate a gift card, simply reach out to a local business or restaurant near you to purchase the card and mail to the desired organization below. Any business that carries grocery items, diapers & wipes, personal hygiene items or cleaning supplies would be useful. The organizations also need gift cards for restaurants, takeout, and fast food locations for food. During the holiday season any gift card can be donated as the families receive them as a Christmas gift, in some cases these are the only gifts children receive.

If you are an immune compromised individual or do not feel comfortable purchasing a gift card in-person, the ICSEW’s Annual Charity Drive page will have an updated list of businesses that offer no-contact purchase options starting December 7. If you are a business that would like to be on this list, please see the section below for businesses for how to participate. ICSEW is coordinating with businesses to arrange delivery of gift cards to specific organizations..

For Individuals: To ensure safe, no-contact delivery, ICSEW is encouraging the public to mail gift cards to charitable organizations for local businesses that carry items in need.

Western Washington:

Eastern Washington

  • New Hope (Grand Coulee, Moses Lake, Mattawa, Othello, Quincy, Royal City) C/O: Tina Steinmetz 311 W 3rd Ave, Moses Lake, WA, 98837
  • YWCA Spokane (Spokane County) C/O: Jennifer Haynes-Harter 930 N Monroe St, Spokane, WA 99201
  • YWCA Yakima (Yakima County) C/O: Miriam Saavedra 818 W Yakima Ave, Yakima, WA 98902

If you are a local business and would like to participate in the gift card and product drive or be added to our list for contact free purchases please contact the ICSEW’s Public Outreach Subcommittee Co-Chairs. For western Washington businesses please contact jasmine.pippin-timco@lcb.wa.gov. For eastern Washington businesses, please contact debra.lefing@atg.wa.gov.  

For more information about the gift card drive, please visit the ICSEW’s Annual Charity Drive webpage, https://icsew.wa.gov/events/charity-drive/

The ICSEW’s Public Outreach Subcommittee has a vested interest in supporting community organizations that share the ICSEW values of Wellness, Advocacy, Leadership, Integrity, Fostering growth and Empowerment.

About the Interagency Committee of State Employed Women:

The Interagency Committee of State Employed Women, ICSEW is made up of governor-appointed state-employees from various agencies. The ICSEW seeks to better the lives of state employees through advocacy, outreach, opportunity, and by advising the Governor and agencies on policies that affect state-employed women.

Mission: To better the lives of state employees by advising the Governor and agencies on policies that affect state-employed women.

Vision: Enriching lives through advocacy, outreach, and opportunity.

For more information about the ICSEW, visit, https://icsew.wa.gov.

Domestic Violence Awareness Month Resources

Submitted by Julie Hyde, Washington State Department of Health

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Since 1987, October has been the month to raise awareness of domestic violence and observe its victims. Domestic violence is a pattern of cruel behavior where one person uses abuse to control another. Domestic violence can be physical, emotional, financial, sexual, and psychological; it can occur between partners, relatives, and even divorcees and ex-partners. One statistic states at least one in four women and one in nine men have experienced domestic violence in their lifetime, and domestic violence accounts for about 15% of all violent crimes in the U.S. 

Domestic violence was already an epidemic before COVID-19, but the health crisis has caused a tremendous spike in incidents of abuse. Even as lockdown restrictions are lifted, the abuse will not simply end. It remains a critical time for survivors, and greater awareness, education, and bystander intervention are desperately needed. This October, join us in activating bystanders and sharing information that can help those who are experiencing violence during this unprecedented time.

“This is unlike any other time, and I admit it, I am afraid. But my fear cannot be compared to that of people who live in abusive homes. In my 17 years working with domestic violence victims, never have I felt so terrified for those who could now face increased intensity and frequency of abuse.” ~ Pamela Zaballa, NO MORE Global Executive Director (entire article https://nomore.org/listening-from-home/)

We are capable of making a change by informing others and providing resources.


The Power and Control Wheel – signs and signals of an abusive relationship:

  • Isolation: This is when your partner controls what you do or whom you meet. The perpetrators use jealousy to justify their heinous actions.
  • Peer Pressure: When your partner threatens to expose your weakness. They may also spread rumors about you.
  • Emotional Blackmail: This is one of the most common abusive actions. It’s when your companion makes you feel bad about yourself for no reason. It includes name-calling and blaming you for their wrongdoings.
  • Using Social Status: It happens when they treat you like a servant or slave. Basically, entitled brats demeaning you and taking away your self-esteem.
  • Intimidation: Making you fear them through gestures, actions, or looks. It may also include destroying your things, abusing your pets, and damaging your lifestyle.
  • Threats: Did your partner ever threaten to leave or commit suicide? Oh yeah, it’s also a form of domestic violence.
  • Sexual Coercion: Getting you drunk or drugged to have sex. Threatening to take your children away just because you said ‘No’ to sex.
  • Denial of Abuse: When your companion denies their abusive behavior and in turn blames you for it.

The Equality Wheel – (the good stuff) signs of a healthy relationship:

  • Non-threatening Behavior: Talking and acting in such a way that makes you feel comfortable and safe. It helps you express yourself and talk about any issues you may have.
  • Negotiation: Your partner acts rationally and looks for a common ground to resolve your conflicts without any fuss.
  • Shared Responsibility: When your partner accepts to share the work among you. Also, they like to make common decisions together.
  • Economic Partnership: You and your partner take all the financial decisions together. While doing so, you also make sure that it benefits both of you.
  • Respect: Honors your personal space and listens to you without any type of judgmental remarks.
  • Accountability and Honesty: Never lies to you or manipulates you. Accepts their mistakes and discusses them with you.

How to get Help

If you recognize one or more of these things in your relationship, please get help. Contact The National Domestic Violence Hotline, call, chat, or text, 24 hours everyday, 800-799-7233 or 800-787-3224 (TTY)

Resource guide and overview: https://domesticviolence.org/

Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence – https://wscadv.org/get-help-now/

National Resource Center for Domestic Violence – https://nrcdv.org/

Domestic Violence Awareness Project – https://www.dvawareness.org/

Domestic Violence Awareness Month PSA – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u1e42rxgjVE

Heart-to-Heart Conversation – My DV Survivor Story – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5skI1_cgL3M