The Texas Council on Family Violence (TCFV) contracted with the Center for Social Work Research (CSWR) to conduct a review of the operations of the National Domestic Violence Hotline (NDVH). Funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, NDVH began operation on February 21, 1996. During the first year of the project, CSWR assessed data structure and software used to collect data at NDVH, conducted an impact assessment of NDVH on local service providers, provided a quality of services assessment through interviews with hotline staff and volunteers, developed a report on the hotline’s first six months of operation, and developed a plan for future research and evaluation of the hotline.

During the past year, CSWR conducted an impact assessment of NDVH on domestic violence services in Texas. A survey, addressing the ten-month period of March through December of 1996, was sent to 68 Texas shelters. The major results from the survey include the following:

  • An increase in the number of hotline calls to Texas shelters is attributed to NDVH publicity and/or referrals.
  • There are increases in the number of persons turned away and in the number of Texas shelters turning persons away due to full shelter capacity.
  • Texas shelters use NDVH as an important resource for referrals.
  • NDVH is positively impacting the field of domestic violence. Seventy-four percent of the respondents indicated that they believe NDVH is impacting the field of domestic violence by providing a toll-free service, a resource for information and referrals across the US, and crisis intervention services to victims of domestic violence. They also indicated that NDVH is helping to reach previously under-served geographic areas (such as rural communities) and previously under-served populations (such as persons with disabilities and persons with limited English-proficiency). Additionally, they believe that NDVH is increasing publicity/awareness about domestic violence and contributing to a more coordinated service delivery system.

Texas Council on Family Violence