Here at Townsquare Media, we are encouraged to volunteer in our communities. In fact, the company dedicates an entire extra PTO day for you to use volunteering wherever you want each year. I usually spend mine volunteering at my daughter's school during big events or at 4-H fair. We also have market volunteer days where our volunteer committee sets up opportunities for us to go volunteer as a group. Today's adventure was here in Owensboro, KY. We went to New Beginnings Sexual Assault Support Services to fill Laundry of Love bags.

What is New Beginnings?

According to the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, over half of women and nearly 1 in 3 men in the United States have experienced sexual violence involving physical contact during their lifetime. In Kentucky, more than 39% of women and 18% of men have experienced contact sexual violence in their lifetime. According to data from the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey, almost half of those raped in Kentucky had their first victimization when they were under the age of 18. Additionally, 82% of first victimizations in the state happened before the age of 25.

New Beginnings exist to elevate, educate, empower, and transform the community to heal from the impact of sexual trauma. They offer free and confidential counseling services to victims and their families as well as education for professionals to students in grades K through 12 – about sexual assault and its prevention.

Where is New Beginnings Located?

New Beginnings has offices in Owensboro, Henderson, and Hartford, Ky. Their therapists travel to each of our seven counties – Daviess, Hancock, Henderson, McLean, Ohio, Union, and Webster – to meet with survivors.

Ashley S
Ashley S


In addition to education and counseling, New Beginnings also offers sexual assault survivors advocacy. When a person who has been assaulted goes to the hospital to be examined a New Beginnings staff member or volunteer will meet them. According to the website, "Advocacy for sexual assault survivors may take many forms, including offering a hotline to call, meeting someone at the hospital for a forensic exam and providing comfort and basic needs after the forensic exam, or explaining legal options and processes."

Laundry of Love

After a sexual assault exam, the authorities must take the clothing a person was wearing during the assault leaving them with only a hospital gown and hospital-supplied toiletries which we all know aren't luxurious by any means. New Beginnings advocates will take along Laundry Bags that are filled with comfy clothing, toiletries, and a stuffed animal for kids.

Ashley S
Ashley S

What is in a Laundry of Love Bag?

The Laundry of Love Bags consist of the following items that are donated by the community:

  • T-Shirt / Sweatshirt
  • Sweat Pants / Sweat Shorts
  • Underwear
  • Socks
  • Sports Bra
  • Slip-On Slippers / Flip-Flops
  • Soap / Body Wash
  • Shampoo / Conditioner
  • Razors
  • Toothbrush / Toothpaste
  • Lotion
  • Comb
  • Hair Ties
  • Stuffed Animal
  • XLarge Zip Lock/Hefty Bags

How Do I Volunteer or Donate?

If you'd like to volunteer or donate, you can drop off items to New Beginnings at 1716 Scherm Road or you can donate online. New Beginnings is also looking for advocates. Advocates go through 40 hours of training. Once certified, they will take on-call shifts. During your shift, if you receive a call, you'll meet the survivor and be available to them through their intake process. Some survivors rely heavily on their advocate for support and some do not. You can also choose the days/times you can be on call and the county you'd like to work in.

I've Been Assaulted - How Can I Get Help?

If you need help, call the New Beginnings Crisis Line any day or time: 800-226-7273.

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