The Hanover Domestic Violence Task Force (HDVTF) began meeting in the early 1990s. A group of service providers came together to discuss the increasing number of calls from citizens involved in domestic violence situations and they formed HDVTF. HDVTF was comprised of government agencies, community service organizations, and concerned citizens who shared an interest in eliminating domestic violence. Professionals and community members incorporated efforts into a non-profit organization in 1994.
Members continued to meet and administer a non-profit response of coordination, a support group for victims and limited crisis financial grants to victims of domestic violence. In 1997, with STOP funding, the first full-time Coordinator was hired and that same year, HDVTF rented an office to open the Resource Center. STOP funding also made it possible to hire a domestic violence investigator at the Hanover Sheriff’s Office. This collaboration strengthened the work on behalf of victims at the community level, formalizing procedures across agencies especially within the criminal and civil justice setting. With new funding between 1997 and 1999, two additional employees were hired to provide direct services in the form of case management, court advocacy, a 24-hour hotline response, hotel shelter and grant and loan financial assistance. In 2011 and 2002, through government and foundation funding, the staff doubled to six full-time employees and the following services were added: a sexual assault program, a child and youth program, residential shelter, a volunteer program and clinical counseling. The Resource Center doubled its office space to accommodate new employees and to improve the ability to provide services. A new collaborative partnership was formed with Hanover Department of Social Services to better serve victim in poverty. Also, sexual assault prevention programs with Randolph-Macon College and middle school prevention program were strengthened. In 2002, the organization adopted a new name: Hanover Safe Place.