CORA (Community Overcoming Relationship Abuse) is San Mateo County’s only provider of comprehensive intimate partner abuse prevention services. Our organization is the result of the 2003 merger between the Center for Domestic Violence Prevention and Sor Juana Inés Services for Abused Women. This restructuring combines expertise in serving the Latino community with seasoned prevention and crisis intervention services for all affected by intimate partner abuse.
Before the merger, back in 1977, the Center for Domestic Violence Prevention (previously named La Casa de San Mateo) served residents with one of the nation’s first 24-hour crisis hotlines. In 1978, they opened a 16-bed shelter program for battered women and their children. A broad spectrum of holistic programs offered direct service and crisis response to victims and child witnesses. With the addition of prevention services, they changed their name to the Center for Domestic Violence Prevention.
Founded in 1993, Sor Juana Inés Services for Abused Women focused on the unique needs of the Latina population with community-based legal and counseling services in Spanish. All CORA services are modeled after Sor Juana Ines’ approach to helping Latino survivors of intimate partner abuse overcome culturally specific barriers to leaving their abusive relationships. We continue to promote and value their tradition of cultural awareness and openness.
With the merger of these two pre-existing agencies in early 2004, we became CORA (Community Overcoming Relationship Abuse). Our name reflects our understanding that it takes a community, working together, to end intimate partner abuse. Today, we provide services to more than 12,000 individuals every year.
Our values and vision recognize the connection between social and institutional oppression (including sexism, racism and heterosexism) and violence, including intimate partner abuse, and the fact that intimate partner abuse results from and is perpetuated by societal beliefs and norms. Our broad spectrum of services address the intergenerational nature of violence and our goal of creating a community where intimate partners treat one another with mutual respect, compassion and integrity.