1974 – Five local Oceanside women realized that there was a need for a “rape crisis” social services agency in North San Diego County. They applied for and received a grant from San Diego County for $45,000 to open the Women’s Resource Center. Their first facility was on South Hill Street (now South Coast Highway), which they shared with the Chicano Federation. Local police departments welcomed WRC as a valuable assistance to them, and a close relationship was formed over the next several years. The demand for services was expanded to include programs to respond to child abuse and domestic violence. Seventeen to eighteen “underground” homes where battered women could be taken and sheltered were located within the community. Demand for the agency’s services continued to grow. These services included:
- Crisis counseling
- Crisis telephone hotline
- Victim advocacy
- Legal service referral
- Temporary transportation
- Information and referral
1977 – WRC relocated its facility to the San Luis Rey Mission Parish Center in order to expand services.
1978. WRC created an associated agency called Casa de Amparo to work with “at-risk” children. Casa was a safe place for families to enroll their children while all family members were involved in counseling and parenting classes. WRC also established its volunteer training program and began using volunteers on the 24-hour hotline and assisting in the shelter programs.
1979 – Casa De Amparo became a separate agency designed to serve court ordered “at-risk” children. Our monthly newsletter was started.
1980 – WRC applied for grants from the City of Oceanside ($100,000), and the County of San Diego ($60,000) a 14-bed short-term residential facility for domestic violence victims and their children. The City of Oceanside leased the property to WRC for $1.00 per year. The funds were used for the renovation and initial operation of the facility. The shelter was initially named ” Gateway ” (later to be renamed, ” Alternatives to Abuse “), and at that time it was the only facility of it’s kind in North San Diego County . WRC started receiving grants to operate the shelter through the County of San Diego , by placement of a surcharge on marriage license fees. We produced the first of the annual “Magical Evening” garden parties at the home of Rusty and Bebe Grosse.
1984 – The Alternatives to Abuse shelter was expanded to 26 beds in response to increasing demand. An emergency motel placement program was developed to handle overflow cases. Much needed programs were established in the following areas:
- Year long, weekly counseling groups for domestic violence perpetrators
- Sexual assault response teams
- Domestic violence response teams
- Children’s counseling
Presentation services for public awareness were established:
- Domestic violence prevention
- Date rape
- Public safety officer education
- Service Club presentations
1990 – The agency expanded its counseling and administrative functions into a new location in Oceanside .
1994 – The City of Oceanside refurbished an abandoned racquetball facility located at 1963 Apple Street . It was converted into:
- New offices for the Women’s Resource Center and it’s staff of 27.
- “Transition House “, a 21 apartment long-term residential facility for domestic violence victims and their children. Residents can stay up to two years while undergoing counseling and learning job skills for future employment.
1998 – The Women’s Resource Center Thrift Store was opened, providing much needed revenues to augment the government grants.
2000 – The “Domestic Violence Response Team” was started.
2004 – A volunteer membership organization called ” The Friends of WRC ” was established in order to expand volunteer opportunities to the community and to expand the membership profile and expertise available to the agency, and to increase our donor base. The WRC Auxiliary was merged into the “Friends”. The Board of Directors initiated a long-term on-going strategic planning process.
2006 – A comprehensive web site was launched that contains information about WRC and it’s services, the organization, finances and needs. As of December 2007, the site was receiving 800 visits per month and this volume was increasing steadily.
2008 – A Spanish language version of the web site was added. This was funded by a grant from the Lawyer Referral Service of the North County Bar Association.