NEW YORK -- The NFL and the National Domestic Violence Hotline have renewed their partnership for three years through a grant from the league. An agreement with Raliance also has been extended.
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. For more than eight years, the NFL has provided financial support to the hotline in its mission to shift power back to those in the United States affected by relationship abuse. The hotline is the only national, 24-hour, year-round resource for survivors offering services via call, chat and text. It was able to answer more than 400,000 calls, texts and chats in 2021 alone, the most in any year since the organization's inception in 1996. The hotline connected survivors with over 200,000 referrals to shelters and domestic violence service providers, and over 190,000 referrals to additional resources across the nation this past year.
The agreements are part of the NFL's overall commitment that includes more than $50 million in donations since 2014.
"We're proud of the ways we've been able to support the incredible work of our partners at the hotline and Raliance, and we're committed to addressing these critical issues in the long term," said Anna Isaacson, the NFL's senior vice president of social responsibility. "We know that, both at the NFL and in society, there is still much more work to do, and we look forward to continuing our partnerships to help survivors find the resources they need."
The hotline, in addition to its direct services, can grow capacity to meet the increased contact volume; further its policy work to advocate for expanded resources for survivors; and establish the National Survivor Data Institute with an emphasis on research on the experiences of survivors, especially those from marginalized communities.
"This is coming at a time when survivors are needing services more than ever," said Katie Ray-Jones, CEO of the National Domestic Violence Hotline. "We are experiencing the highest contact volume in our history. Together we must do more to advocate for expanded resources for survivors and ensure access to services. The road ahead for true systemic change is a long one, and it will take all of us committed to ensure that relationships are healthy and free from violence. We are encouraged whenever an industry leader, such as the NFL, steps forward to stand with and support survivors."
Raliance was created in 2016 to unify the national sexual violence field to better support victims and survivors. In addition to supporting their general operations, communications and advocacy work, the NFL and Raliance have awarded nearly $3 million in grants to prevention programs and projects that support survivors and make communities safer. The majority of the 68 projects funded to date were awarded to programs serving people of color; LGBTQ+ communities; people with disabilities; religious minorities; immigrants; youths; and others who often are heavily impacted by sexual violence yet historically overlooked by funders.
This month, the NFL has renewed a three-year grant partnership with Raliance.
"Through this generous grant, we will be able to advance our mission to help organizations across sectors create inclusive and safer environments for all," said Sandra Henriquez, founding member and managing partner of Raliance. "We look forward to the work ahead."