our mission: creating hope, healing lives, and changing community for survivors of violence, abuse, and exploitation

• Safelight is a comprehensive agency serving survivors of family/domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse, elder abuse, and human trafficking.

• Without the generosity this past year without over 600 donors, volunteers, and sponsors, we could not do what we do.

• A non-profit Henderson County serving over 45,000 individuals since 1984.

Organizational Summary

Safelight, Inc. (hereinafter referred to as “Safelight” or the “Agency”) is a private, non-profit organization that is committed to breaking the cycle of interpersonal violence. Safelight since 1984 has been providing trauma informed services that allow survivors of interpersonal violence (i. e. domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, elder abuse, child abuse, etc.) to build new, violence-free lives in a sustainable way. Safelight is a comprehensive nonprofit serving survivors and we offer a continuum of services helping move survivors from crisis to sustainability. Safelight is known as the primary service provider for survivors in Henderson County.

Safelight provides a multifaceted approach to counteracting abuse and violence in our community as we serve all survivors of interpersonal violence. All services and programs are offered free-of-charge in a secure, nonjudgmental environment conducive to recovery from abuse and trauma. Our organization has evolved from a crisis-driven agency to one creating stability for our clients delivering long term services connection addressing community needs such as safe affordable housing, accessible healthcare, and the need for stable employment.

Through our continuum of programs, we help survivors begin the process of overcoming the physical and emotional trauma these include the largest 24/7 emergency shelter and hotline for survivors in western NC, counseling center with individual and support group services, an accredited child advocacy center performing child medical exams and forensic interviews, a family advocacy center offering legal, law enforcement and medical advocacy and linkages to care, a job training program onsite and outreach program for prevention and education in our community. By removing barriers, Safelight’s services heal lives and create a safer, healthier community.

Safelight’s services are offered to all survivors (and their families) of interpersonal//domestic violence, sexual assault, and child abuse regardless of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, sexual orientation, or gender identity), national origin, disability, age, genetic information (including family medical history. Safelight services are offered free of charge (exception is DVIP for perpetrators) and none shall not be denied based on ability to pay.

Board of Directors

President: Anna Conner
Vice President: Clint Holt      
Secretary: Rafe Westbrook
Treasurer: Chris Scruggs       
Lauren Wilkie, Executive Director


Marilee Arnold

Mariah Cassum

Crystal Cauley

Blair Myhand

Nishma Patel

Ruth Simons

Christy Sneller

Michael Willey 

Annual Reports

2022-2023 Annual Report


Program History

Since 1984, Safelight, Inc., have expanded organically, responding to the growing needs of our community. We offer a comprehensive package of services to meet the needs of survivors of violence and abuse. The backbone of our services is support for the survivors of interpersonal violence (i. e. family/domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, elderly abuse, and child abuse) and providing survivors with resources to recover and manage how trauma has impacted their lives. These services may include safe shelter, court accompaniment, hospital accompaniment, forensic interviews and medical exams as needed, case management, counseling, and support groups.


Creating hope, healing lives, and changing community for survivors of violence, abuse, and exploitation.


creating hope, healing lives, changing community


A community free of interpersonal violence that values dignity, respect, and safety for everyone.


Respect, Professionalism, Accountability, Innovation, Cooperation, Client Centered

    Operating Principles

  • Programs will all be client-centered
  • All stakeholders will respect the dignity and promote the safety of everyone—clients, staff, and the community
  • All spaces will be clean, well maintained, and well managed
  • Safelight will complement and integrate with partner programs in the community
  • The program will be empirically evaluated, goal directed, and outcome based

Safelight's Timeline

1983: Henderson County Child Abuse Task Force formed (later became FOCUS).

1984: The Women’s Crisis Ministry starts in a church basement in Hendersonville to serve women dealing with crises such as divorce and widowhood.
Mainstay is formed with the mission of helping battered women.

1985: Women’s Crisis Ministry becomes a part of Mainstay and operates in the basement of the City Office.

1986: Mainstay purchases and moves shelter for battered women and their children into a house off Haywood Road.

1986:  Henderson County Rape Crisis Center as part of Buncombe County (later renamed The Healing Place) opened and provided services for those who experienced sexual assault.

1986:  First Batters Intervention Program in NC (now called Domestic Violence Intervention Program).

1987:  Started financial support from Marriage license filing fees in NC (thanks to a board member).

1988: A building adjacent to the Mainstay shelter is purchased for moving administration.

1989-1997: Sawbones (Physicians) vs Jawbones (Lawyers) had four Basketball Games to raise the visibility of child abuse in our Community and fundraise for the Child Advocacy Center

1990: FOCUS “Friends of Children United Services” (later The Healing Place) began accepting children as the first accredited CAC in North Carolina.
Mainstay opens the first resale store in Henderson County located on Barnwell Street.

1995: Mainstay Shelter is destroyed by fire, and a temporary Shelter is set up downtown. A new facility at 125 South Main Street opens April 21, 1996. Administrative offices, the resale store and the Shelter are located under one roof for the first time.

1996: The Henderson County Rape Crisis Center merges with FOCUS “Friends of Children United Services” and change their name to The Healing Place, Inc.

2008: Mainstay moves into its current location at 133 Fifth Avenue West. The new location allows for the expansion of additional services.

2008: Mainstay shelter and resale store moves to 5th Avenue, current location.

2011: Mainstay rents the upper portion of 127 Fifth Avenue West.

2013: Mainstay opens the Dandelion Café at 127 Fifth Avenue West, starting the Job Training Program.

2014: Mainstay and its partnering including Pisgah Legal Services opens the Family Advocacy/Justice Center across from the courthouse.

2015: Mainstay reopens the counties Child Advocacy Center.
Mainstay’s job training program expands into the Resale Store.

2016: Safelight, Inc. formed as Mainstay and The Healing Place merge to better provide essential services to all survivors.

2017: The Child Advocacy Center regains national accreditation.
Safelight expands its job training program to include Sewing Our World Together.

2019: Safelight expands opens a separate Counseling Center to accommodate additional therapists/counselors in a rental off Asheville Highway

2021: Safelight moves Counseling Center into Outreach/Admin area upstairs at 127 5th Avenue. Full Renovation of basement 133 5th Avenue occurs adding a large meeting room, computer lab and additional office for staff.

2022: Washington Street office opened to house Admin, FAC, Counseling Center, Outreach and CAC. Rented upstairs of 127 5th Avenue offices to Pisgah Legal Services.

2023: Lethality Assessment Program Launched with Safelight and all our local law enforcement partners

2023-2024 Annual Sponsors:

Stuller Power Solutions
Champion Comfort Experts
Advent Health
Relocate 828
Dunlap Construction
Horizon Heat and Air
Southern Alarm
UNC Health Pardee logo

Funded By:

Governors Crime Commission
Council For Women
Family Violence Prevention Services Program
United Way
Hunter Hometown Foundation
Mary Kay Foundation

Memberships and Affiliations:

NCA Accredited Member
Charity Navigator Safelight Page
Impact Health logo and website link