Non-profit organization dedicated to protecting domestic violence, sexual assault victims is looking for holiday donations

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- The Wake County District Attorney's office is seeing a surge in domestic violence cases during the pandemic. Since March, there's been a 20% increase.

The pandemic has changed the way InterAct -- a non-organization dedicated to providing services to victims and survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault -- has had to operate on a regular basis.

Instead of people being able to walk in for a consult, all their sessions are virtual. They've also set up an online chat function on their website.

Their Holiday Bazaar this year is also more pandemic friendly. Normally, survivors and their loved ones get to come into the facility on Oberlin Road to pick out what they want.

In 2020, InterAct staff is putting together a winter-themed box with games, hot chocolate kit and sweet treats. In addition, a hundred families are also getting $25-$50 gift cards to places like Wal-Mart or Target.

"That independence to say, 'Hey I want to pick this out for my child' and to put their name on it and wrap it up,' we just feel like that whole process will give them more hope and encouragement," said Ikeya Kearney, who works at the non-profit.

Kearney is a Raleigh native who came to Interact when she was 10. She and her brother left with their mother who was being abused by their stepfather.


She remembers shopping at the Holiday Bazaar herself, she also remembers how the holiday season has the possibility of magnifying someone's already terrible situation.

"It brings more depression and more anxiety," she said. "It makes you feel like you want the holidays to blow over and get over with."
She's hopeful parents get a different feeling of independence this year by being able to shop for kids on their own.

InterAct is currently halfway to their donation goal of $30,000; those interested in helping the non-profit can by clicking here.

They're giving away boxes on Dec. 5. You can also drop off donations at the center or donate online.
Copyright © 2020 WTVD-TV. All Rights Reserved.