Safe Haven has played a prominent role in the battered women’s movement since the very beginning.

Started on March 1st 1978, Safe Haven (formerly known as the Women’s Coalition) was one of the very first battered women’s shelters in the country. Since then, it has grown into a 39-bed shelter facility that houses a hotline as well as community education and volunteer programs. Safe Haven Resource Center is the headquarters for our legal advocacy program, self-sufficiency program and community partnerships.

In 2015 Safe Haven received a grant from the Minnesota Historical Society’s  Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund to record the history of the organization. Ten interviews were conducted in early 2015 with women who had been involved with the original organization of the Women’s Coalition, the establishment of the first and later shelter facilities, and others who were closely linked as a volunteers, staff or employees of associated organizations. The project generated over eleven hours of audio files and 181 pages of interview transcripts. Video of a few of the interviews was also recorded. Interview files are housed in the UMD Archives and Special Collections at the Kathryn A. Martin Library at the University of Minnesota, Duluth.  Here you can find the Safe Haven Oral History Transcript Collection.

To learn more about our rich history read “Acknowledging 25 Years,” by Cathryn Curley, an article that first appeared in the May 2003 issue of Voices, the Safe Haven Shelter newsletter.