You are here:


What exactly does SHALVA do?

SHALVA provides a 24/7 helpline and individual and group counseling to domestic abuse survivors. For ongoing counseling clients, we also provide legal information and support, financial assistance, interest-free loans and referrals. Additionally, SHALVA has a team dedicated to community outreach and education about domestic abuse within the Jewish community.

What makes SHALVA unique?

SHALVA staff is sensitive to the unique religious and cultural issues Jewish families of any denomination may face while also addressing the universal needs of all abuse survivors. SHALVA is the only Jewish agency in the Chicago metropolitan area specifically certified by the State of Illinois to provide domestic violence counseling.

Where is SHALVA located?

SHALVA’s location is undisclosed for the safety of our clients and staff.

Is SHALVA a shelter?

SHALVA does not operate a shelter. If temporary housing is needed, SHALVA provides referrals to local domestic violence shelters. Additionally, SHALVA can facilitate requests at area shelters for Kosher food and special accommodations based on religious observance.

Does SHALVA counsel men?

Domestic abuse doesn’t discriminate. Anyone can be impacted by domestic abuse regardless of gender identity, race, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, religion, education, or socioeconomic background.

SHALVA is committed to expanding our counseling services to survivors of any gender identity. At this time, we currently assist male callers (including male survivors, friends and relatives of survivors, or males who harm) on the phone and refer them to an agency that can best fit their needs.

Do you only help members of the Jewish community?

SHALVA’s mission is to offer deep Jewish cultural competency and expertise in domestic abuse to support our diverse community. While we assist callers of all faiths on the 24-hour helpline and provide resources and referrals to all, we only provide culturally specific counseling and support to those who identify as Jewish or are  in a relationship with someone Jewish.

If someone comes to SHALVA, does that mean they will get divorced?

No! Our therapists respect a client’s right to make the decisions that are best for them. They empower clients to take whatever direction they choose in a non-judgmental and caring way. SHALVA educates about options, and it is up to each client to decide what path to follow.

Do you provide legal assistance and representation?

SHALVA has a family law attorney on staff as part of our Legal Liaison program to answer clients’ legal questions. To receive legal support, an in-office clinical assessment must be completed. SHALVA does not offer representation in court.

Does SHALVA offer financial assistance?

SHALVA provides interest free loans and monetary assistance to ongoing clients who meet the criteria.