This Is Your About Page Subtitle
Sojourner Project, often known as Sojourner, was named in honor of Sojourner Truth, a traveling philosopher and
orator, a woman who spoke about justice, equality and truth and the need for change.
Sojourner Truth was named Isabella Baumfree. Born a slave, she spoke passionately,
advocating for the end of slavery and the recognition of women’s rights. In the 1820s,
when still quite a young woman, she escaped from her New York owner after being
brutally treated and sold away from her family. By the 1840s, Truth had become a
powerful speaker against slavery, often moving her audiences to tears and
exclamations of horror with her firsthand accounts of what slaves endured at the hands of
cruel masters. She inspired those who heard her and her voice called many to action
on behalf of those who were powerless.
In taking her name, Sojourner’s founders endeavored to honor the principles for which she stood and to continue her efforts to provide hope, safety, and support to those victimized by violence and abuse. Our commitment has not wavered and this is evidenced in our current agency mission and goals.
" I will not allow my life's light to be determined by the darkness around me."
- Sojourner Truth
Sojourner Project, Inc. began in 1977 when two Hopkins residents, Kitty Alcott and Jenny Arimond, documented domestic abuse in their community, west Hennepin County. As they spoke out, Kitty and Jenny gave a human face to the issue of family violence in our own community; subsequently, others joined their quest. For the next two years, Jenny, Kitty, and their supporters lobbied for support and educated the public about the need for a domestic violence program in the area. In 1978, with the support of agencies such as St. Joseph’s, Hennepin County, Hopkins Interchurch Council, West Hennepin Human Services Council, and the Hopkins City Council, one of the first battered women’s shelters in Minnesota opened in a former single-family home in downtown Hopkins.
Then known as The Hopkins Project, the organization initially kept its focus on providing a 24 hour emergency phone line, legal advocacy and support groups for the shelter’s residents. The organization expanded its reach beyond the shelter wall in 1982, when it began partnering with the Hopkins Police Department to provide support, information and referrals to victims immediately following a domestic assault. Soon, hundreds of additional women and children began connecting with the organization, requesting information, support, counseling and advocacy in the legal system, and our community-based services were firmly established.
Today Sojourner Project, Inc. maintains working relationships with many police departments serving the west Hennepin Community, and our programs serve more than 1,000 survivors and their children each year though our shelter and community-based services.
Sojourner’s logo is a meaningful design that serves to communicate who we are and what we do. The design links our name Sojourner more clearly to our namesake Sojourner Truth. She took the name Sojourner which means “to stay temporarily” as she engaged upon her pursuit of freedom and justice. The road suggests the journey taken by many towards a life of greater safety. The smooth edge of the oval embraces the road which at its end is open and wide with opportunity. Together they represent the work and spirit of our organization and a step forward on our journey. In January 2008, Sojourner applied this logo to all of its communication materials.
Beneath Sojourner’s logo is the phrase “Supporting the Journey from Fear to Hope.” These seven words define the heart of our work.
Advocates for victim safety;
Supports the transition from victim to survivor; and
Educates for the prevention and elimination of domestic violence.
Sojourner’s mission is to provide emergency shelter, support, and legal advocacy services to those victimized by domestic violence and other forms of interpersonal violence. To that end, we provide services to victims of dating violence and sexual assault. Our ultimate goal encourages the change from crisis to stability and the transition from victim to survivor. In order to build safer communities, Sojourner conducts outreach activities and specifically designed presentations to heighten public awareness and engage groups and individuals in educational opportunities to prevent future victims and abusers. All Sojourner services are confidential and free of charge.
Our key service priority is victim safety.
We believe that all people are entitled to live free from violence or threat of violence.
We expect staff and volunteers to demonstrate professional conduct at all times and perform their work in an honest and ethical manner.
Sojourner respects the right of program participants to individual self-determination and promotes services that encourage informed-decision making and autonomy.
We recognize the right of clients to privacy and confidentiality.
We believe that healthy relationships do not involve violent, abusive, or coercive behavior.
We endeavor to understand unique cultural identities, experiences, and circumstances of program participants.
Sojourner is committed to an anti-discrimination policy and endeavors to be inclusive in all areas including but not limited to age, race, gender, religion, ethnicity, national origin, immigration status, sexual orientation, or disability.