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Celebrating 40: Michele Karcher-Clark

Before becoming the director of Bethany House in 1997, Michele Karcher-Clark was a social worker and mental health counselor.

She directed Bethany House through 2001 and has worked faithfully as a consultant ever since.

Michele’s background in mental health led her to formalize systems and processes at Bethany House, moving away from grass roots organizing toward the structure we operate under today. 

Michele’s work over the last 25 years has included research to ensure Bethany House policies and procedures meet best practice standards. Because of her diligence, Bethany House has stayed ahead of the curve as standards develop.

“Best Practices” are research-based guidelines shown to be the most effective approach for clients. When serving individuals who have survived domestic violence, centering the participant’s dignity and autonomy are crucial. We call this being survivor-centered or survivor-led.

Being survivor-led, in part, means believing survivors when they tell us what they need, then providing connections to community resources that will support them as they work to achieve their goals.

Keeping up with the research on domestic violence services helps us continuously make our work accessible to more people.

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