Breaking the Silence of Abuse Groups Reaching out to Women from South Asia

By Ahmed-Ullah, Noreen S. | Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), October 10, 1999 | Go to article overview

Breaking the Silence of Abuse Groups Reaching out to Women from South Asia


Ahmed-Ullah, Noreen S., Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)


Byline: Noreen S. Ahmed-Ullah Daily Herald Staff Writer

It wasn't the two ruptured eardrums or the nine miscarriages suffered at the hands of her husband over the span of 17 years.

It was the threat of losing her children that finally drove a Pakistani immigrant woman to seek help.

Her story is one repeated in the growing South Asian community sprawled throughout Chicago and its western suburbs.

As in any other culture, domestic violence exists in the South Asian community. But what is different are the characteristics of abuse that underlies this culture.

What it adds up to is a wall of silence so prevalent that these predominantly Indian and Pakistani women often endure violence for years and years. Battered bodies, damaged psyches and impaired family cycles are the result.

Two social service agencies that serve mostly South Asians chose October, Domestic Violence Month, to increase understanding about the plight of these women. Both Hamdard Center of Wood Dale and Apna Ghar of Chicago plan October fund-raisers to educate the public and the South Asian community and to raise funds.

Apna Ghar, which means "our home" holds its fund-raiser in Oak Brook today. Wood Dale's Hamdard Center, which means "we share your pain," has its benefit on Oct. 30 in Rosemont.

The older of the two shelters, Apna Ghar was founded a decade ago by five Indian and Pakistani women of varying professional backgrounds. The group serves 200 women a year. It has a 24-hour hotline and safe home and helps victims obtain orders of protection. It also encourages clients to pursue their legal rights, something many of them at first are unaware of.

Wood Dale's Hamdard Center was started by husband-and-wife team Mohammad and Farzana Hamid in 1993. The two clinical psychologists, who came from India 33-years ago, opened the agency and shelter after noting that domestic violence was turning into a "silent epidemic."

They see nearly 600 cases of spousal abuse a year, of which 60 percent are from DuPage County.

The two groups serve South Asians of varying religious backgrounds - Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs.

The South Asian community, one of the fastest growing in DuPage County, numbers as many as 100,000 throughout Chicago and suburban enclaves, such as Schaumburg, Barrington, Palatine, Naperville, Villa Park and Oak Brook.

It hasn't been easy for the two shelters to match the need of their services as the population rapidly grows.

"When we started there was such a denial that we even had a problem with that," recalls Farzana Hamid. "People would say, 'These kinds of problems are American problems, and they do not happen in our community. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Breaking the Silence of Abuse Groups Reaching out to Women from South Asia
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.