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About Avalon

Avalon is the regional state-recognized, -funded and -accredited agency for domestic violence and sexual assault, including rape and human trafficking. 
We serve some 600 people a year in Williamsburg, James City County, York County, Poquoson, New Kent, West Point and Charles City, as well as the Middle Peninsula of Gloucester, Mathews, Middlesex, King and Queen and King William Counties.

The professional staff of Avalon Center includes six credentialed counselors, including a dedicated children's counselor and a high-risk counselor specifically for rape and human trafficking survivors. The Avalon Center campus houses about 50 people and provides onsite professional counseling and life skills education. Through the Outreach Office, Avalon Center provides programs for youth and adults including individual and group counseling, and supervised visitation and custody exchange.


Avalon Center works to end domestic and sexual violence by breaking the cycle of abuse through prevention, education, shelter and support services in the Williamsburg area.


Avalon Center envisions an aware community that works together to promote healthy relationships and to end domestic and sexual violence.

Our Guiding Principles

  • We work to empower survivors.
  • We provide research-based, best practices in our work.
  • We have highly trained, trauma-informed staff that offers voluntary services.
  • We make the most of available resources through careful stewardship of gifts and grants, and through collaboration and partnerships with other organizations.
  • We are an example of excellence for other domestic and sexual violence programs in our state and nation.
  • We provide services to all impacted individuals regardless of race, age, gender, sexual orientation, creed, or religion.

2016-2019 Strategic Plan


Most Recent Audited Financial Statement

IRS Form 990


In 1978, a study group of local women concerned about violence against women began a task force to study the issue and conduct a needs assessment. It's first location was in the basement of St. Stephen Lutheran Church. Avalon’s first service, the Helpline, began in 1980 and was answered in the basement of the local United Methodist Church.

Avalon was originally known as the Williamsburg Task Force on Battered Women. The WTFBW was incorporated in December 1980, and appointed a director. The organization was certified as a tax-exempt, non-profit organization.

Shelter was first provided through a series of safe homes in the community.  Twenty victims were served the first year.  As the demand for services grew, a two-bedroom home off Ironbound Road was leased in 1983. One bedroom served as an office for administrative work and answering the Helpline. The shelter and Helpline were staffed primarily by volunteers and part-time staff. The WTFBW became a sexual assault crisis center in 1985.

In 1985 the current 5-acre site was purchased and the existing house became the four-bedroom, 16-bed shelter.  An apartment in a converted garage became a one-bedroom transitional apartment.  The rest of the space was used as an administrative offices.

The name of the WTFBW was changed to Avalon: A Center for Women and Children in 1990.

As more services were provided and the existing shelter’s ability to provide safe, secure shelter lessened, the Board of Directors approved a plan to embark on a campaign to raise funds to build a new emergency shelter and six apartments.  The Capital Campaign formally began in 1994.  The first formal fundraiser was done by the area realtors.  
Construction of the project began in March 1998.  

Two months later, an Outreach Office on Richmond Road was opened and financed by a grant from Bruton Parish Church. During construction of the new project, the staff relocated to the Outreach Office. Shelter residents were moved to the newly constructed emergency shelter December 23, 1998. Less than 24-hours later, an ice storm closed the shelter and residents were relocated to a temporary shelter. In February 1999, renovation of the administrative office was completed and the first family occupied one of the six apartments.  

With a shelter and six extended-stay apartments in place and a busy community outreach office, Avalon serves as the resource for Greater Williamsburg survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and sex trafficking. Avalon has formal partnerships with the College of William & Mary, local departments of social services, schools, police, Bacon Street and a many other agencies. Avalon participates on the local Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) and provides advocates for hospital and court accompaniment.

By focusing on providing trauma-informed, survivor-led, self-sufficiency based services; Avalon helps break the cycle of abuse and creates a positive future for about 600 women, men and children in the Williamsburg area every year.

In 2016, Avalon: A Center for Women and Children begins using the name: Avalon Center.

Board of Directors

Glenda Turner, Chair
Busch Gardens

Emily Rossiter, Vice Chair
Regulatory Resources, Inc.

Erna Rodgers, Secretary

Lynn Pryor, Treasurer
Mitre Corporation (ret.)

Robert Beall
Eastern Virginia Bank

Heidi Hawkins
Development Executive

Lou Cale
Coldwell Banker

Nickolas Coiner
Towne Benefits

Tina Gallien
​Dominion Resources

Leslye Givarz
Public Co. Accounting Oversight Board (ret.)

Erin Hogge
​J. S. G Corporation

Naomh Hudson
LeClair Ryan

Richard K. Lodwick, O.D.
Williamsburg Eye Associates

TJ Ptachick
King Investing Group

Mike Rock
Nationwide Insurance

Kathleen Slevin
William & Mary Vice Provost for Academic Affairs (ret.)



To contact any other staff member, please call the Main Office at 757-258-5022 or our 24-hour Helpline at 757-258-5051.


Employment-Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteer Coordinator Full-Time Position

The selected candidate will coordinate the volunteer program for Avalon Center — primarily by attracting, training, retaining and supervising volunteers. This position reports to the Director of Development and Communications. ​Please email a cover letter and resume or any questions here admin@avaloncenter.org, or call (757) 258-5022 for more information.


•    Collaborate with all Avalon Center staff in providing volunteer services in various areas across the organization
•    Coordinate volunteer support with community organizations
•    Recruit, train and evaluate Avalon volunteers regularly
•    Communicate successfully within the organization and represent Avalon Center throughout the greater community regarding Avalon Center in general, and the internal and external volunteer program 
•    Conduct community presentations
•    Plan and conduct volunteer recognition activities and events
•    Maintain accurate and timely training and service records and reports as required
•    Adhere to Avalon’s confidentiality policy.


•    Bachelor’s degree preferred.  
•    Knowledge of the community and volunteer management best practices.
•    Excellent communication skills.
•    Computer skills: project management software, database management
•    Completion of pre-employment and annual criminal history background review.
•    Absence of DV relationship for at least 2 years.
•    Virginia driver’s license.

Summer Camp Counselor (Temporary: 6/26/17 – 7/21/17, 40 hrs per week)​

Major Responsibilities:   Candidate will Assist Avalon’s Youth Services staff with operation of summer day camp for youth that have experienced trauma due to abuse or crime.  Responsible for implementation of activities, curriculum and the overall physical and emotional safety of campers. Act as role model and mentor for youth, supervise age appropriate activities designed to promote healing and healthy behaviors for young victims.

Duties include but are not limited to: 
-  Provide direct supervision to ensure a safe and healthy environment, both physically and mentally for all campers.
- Ensures children are aware of rules, and daily scheduled routines.
- Attend all staff meetings and training required of camp counselors.
- Assist in the planning and implementing of the daily activities that fit the children’s needs and interests.  
- Takes responsibility for the supplies, equipment and materials.
- Report all suspicions of child abuse to proper authorities. 
- Make sure proper procedures are followed for sign-in/out of children.
- Encourage campers and participate in activities designed to build resilience.
-  Adhere to Avalon’s client data confidentiality policy.

Job Requirements

-  Bachelor’s degree in psychology, human services, child development or related field preferred. Minimum 2 years of experience working with children in a structured environment.  
-  Desire and ability to work with youth of all abilities and backgrounds.
- Ability to remain alert, keeping safety in mind.   
-  Completion of pre-employment child registry/criminal history background 
-  Child CPR and 1st Aid certification preferred.
- Ability to supervise and participate in outdoor summer activities and lift 30 pounds.
-  Valid Virginia driver’s license.

This description provides a general overview of the type and levels of work performed and is not intended to be all-inclusive or to represent a comprehensive description of all specific duties. The knowledge, skills, and abilities may be acquired through a combination of formal schooling, prior experience or on-the-job training.  Avalon Center is an Equal Opportunity Employer.  ​Please email a cover letter and resume or any questions here, or call (757) 258-5022 for more information.

Transportation & Campus Support Advocate

Avalon Center is seeking a part-time staff person responsible for passenger-van driving and light maintenance.  The candidate will safely transport Avalon’s clients; coordinate the maintenance and repair of agency vehicles, and transport supplies and donations to shelter.  The candidate will also be integral to the upkeep of the shelter campus by performing daily inspections and maintenance of the facilities.  
Avalon Center works to end domestic and sexual violence by breaking the cycle of abuse through prevention, education, shelter and support services in the Williamsburg area.  This opportunity is well-suited to seniors and retirees with relevant skills and interests.  ​Please email a cover letter and resume or any questions here, or call (757) 258-5022 for more information.  

Shelter Advocate - As Needed, Part-time

We are seeking a compassionate and motivated individual to provide supportive services to adult residents and their children in our communal-living emergency shelter. Applicants must be able to clearly communicate using verbal and written skills and the ability to communicate shelter expectations and complete required reporting documentation. They must possess crisis intervention skills and the ability to manage and resolve conflict, and should have a knowledge of the effects of domestic violence and sexual assault, and homelessness, especially on women and children. A minimum of a high school education is required, with a degree in human services, psychology, or social work preferred. Please email a cover letter and resume or any questions here.

Avalon Center is an equal opportunity employer. All applicants will receive consideration without regard to race, religion, sex, color, sexual orientation, national origin, handicap, or age.


For more information about internships, contact Priscilla Caldwell at priscilla@avaloncenter.org

Hospital Accompaniment Volunteers

We believe that emergency care for sexual assault should be healing, not traumatizing—and we’re looking for more hospital accompaniment volunteers to help make that a reality.  Avalon Center provides hospital accompaniment to survivors of sexual assault who seek medical attention or support.  At the hospital, survivors can choose whether or not to take legal action and if they wish to undergo an examination for physical evidence.  The advocate helps provide information about such decisions and supports survivors in their choices and throughout their hospital visit.  

Oftentimes this visit to the emergency room is made alone, and survivors require the support of their advocates during examinations.  In the days following an assault, survivors have difficulty recounting their experience again and again.  Accompaniment advocates help survivors record the facts of the event so repeated questioning won’t occur.  With this information, the advocate can also help coordinate the appropriate response and follow up on the survivor’s behalf. 

We are seeking volunteers in our service area, including Williamsburg, Poquoson, York, James City, Charles City, and New Kent.  Volunteers will be an integral part of an on-call advocacy team and will be trained in trauma informed-care, sexual assault response, hospital accompaniment, and advocacy skills. This opportunity is well suited to people with 10 or more years of experience in the workforce. 

Apply here, or call (757)258-5022 for more information.  



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Recent Posts

Testimonial 11

"The help from the staff was exceptionally well. Everyone was professional, knowledgeable and helpful. The service from this organization is great!"

Testimonial 12

"The positive experiences I had with the program is the grounding techniques and the ability to focus and understand who I am as an individual a person. That my past does not define me."

Testimonial 10

"I was able to have a clean safe environment and meet others that are in similar situation letting me know I am not alone. My needs and concerns were met promptly and I was treated with dignity and respect."

Testimonial 9

Staff welcomed me back without "shaming" me for having to come back."

Testimonial 8

"I came in with nothing- no home- no money- no shelter at all. I left with a job, food and my very own apartment. Thanks to Avalon!"

Testimonial 7

"The positive experience I have had with Avalon and the services they offered me is the interaction that I now have with me. I am able to love me and love others. To be able to interact with other women in my life and around me. Seeing the beauty in women and their strength. I am an overcomer and Avalon helped me to own and claim that."

Testimonial 6

"The shelter assisted my family with a safe environment to reside while moving forward with our lives. Staff has always been helpful when needed and my children participate in the programs available to them. I was an all around good experience for us."

Testimonial 3

I really have no idea what I could have done if Avalon didn’t accept me or exist.

Testimonial 2

Without Avalon’s shelter… I probably would have stayed in the relationship because I had no where else to go. This seems to be the trend for women who are abused. I may have lost my life.

Testimonial 1

I usually do not talk to anyone about our problems at home and I just plow through the crappy part and try to forget it. But coming here I just got a break and talking to your staff just let me get my frustrations out and vent my fears… Thank you for listening and thank you for allowing us to stay in a protected space.

Testimonial 5

"When I "messed up" one time, they were not judgmental, they helped me. I give all the praise in world. They believed in me and gave me a second chance."

Testimonial 4

"I thank God each and every day for Avalon and their staff, for God only knows where I would be today without Avalon."


P. O. Box 6805 Avalon is a 501c3 organization
Williamsburg, VA 23188 Tax ID: 52-1208945



Supported by Grant #15-D2631SP14 awarded to the Virginia Department of Criminal justice by the Office for Victims of Crime, U.S. Department of Justice. Points of view or opinions contained herein are those of Avalon and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice. 


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