Culturally Competent Programming

We are committed to providing a safe, encouraging, engaging and non-judgmental environment that welcomes and respects the visible and invisible qualities that make people who they are, including their culture, traditions, ethnicity and beliefs. MSCFV continues to work to provide culturally competent programming, including specific services for the 13-16% of MSCFV clients that self-identify as Hispanic. Cultural Competency is the provision of programming that is culturally and linguistically respectful, responsive and aware, recognizing how a person’s culture may require different ways of delivering and communicating help.

About our Hispanic Clients

The average Hispanic client is a 31-year-old unmarried woman with one (35%) or two (33%) children. Hispanic victims typically have low education levels, with two out of three (65%) lacking at least a high school diploma. A little more than half has earnings from employment; 24% report no income at all when they first come to MSCFV for services. The average Hispanic client received MSCFV services for 3.5 months. This is significantly longer than the average of two months for other MSCFV clients.

Most Hispanic victims who receive MSCFV services experience abuse at the hands of a boyfriend (67%) or spouse (52%) who lives with them. A significant minority of Hispanic victims (28%) have left their abuser at least once before. Half of Hispanic clients come to MSCFV for services after a specific abusive incident. Police are involved in most of these specific incidents.

MSCFV Services in Spanish

  • 12 - 16% of MSCFV clients speak Spanish as their primary language so all MSCFV services are provided in English and Spanish. has a model program and service delivery system for Spanish speaking victims.
  • Bi-lingual staff or translation technology is available 24/7 to respond to hotline calls, provide crisis response services to area hospitals and court commissioner’s offices, provide counseling services and work with shelter clients.
  • Bilingual Staff and translation technology provide translation and interpretation services to attorneys who represent clients in emergency civil proceedings and they provide emergency legal advocacy (technology translation is not allowed in court rooms, so interpreters are provided).
  • With the support of The Caroline Foundation, MSCFV has a bi-lingual counselor to assist spanish-speaking victims of family violence.
  • Specialized training about Hispanic victims is provided in English and Spanish
  • MSCFV brochures, information packets and documents for victims to sign are provided in Spanish.
  • For victims interested in learning English, ESL classes are offered in partnership with Chesapeake College.