The volunteer program is essential for the operations of S.A.F.E, Place as well as an education tool. Many people still do not understand the dynamics of domestic violence – often blaming the victim for staying rather than demanding accountability for the assailant. There is an expression in domestic violence, “Scared to stay, afraid to leave.” The risk of lethality increases by 75% when a victim leaves her assailant. Unfortunately, safety planning sometimes includes staying in an abusive situation until a safe exit strategy can be determined. We believe that a victim knows the situation best and we do everything we can to keep them safe. Victims come to S.A.F.E. Place already blaming themselves for the abuse – because that is what their assailant has told them. They have literally been held captive, verbally and/or physically assaulted and isolated. It is critical that the staff and volunteers of S.A.F.E. Place do not inadvertently make a victim blaming statement and understand the risks of lethality that are involved now that a victim has left the assailant. Therefore, S.A.F.E. Place offers a 40 hour training program for all new staff and all volunteers so that they stay safe, understand the dynamics of domestic violence, and are able to serve the victims and their children with excellence.