About the
Women's Shelter

Our History

Women's ShelterWomen's Shelter, Inc. was started by and has been sustained by survivors of domestic abuse. It began in the late 1970’s as a task force by three survivors and the Rochester Chapter of NOW who were determined to give other abused women something they didn't have: a safe and secure place to live and help in learning how to live independently. Over the years, Women's Shelter, Inc. has expanded to provide more space to safely house women and children.

In addition, Women's Shelter, Inc. has added children's advocacy, an International Shelter with programming specific to immigrant battered women and their children, Transitional Housing, and a multi-lingual staff. We also have satellite offices in Dodge, Fillmore, Olmsted and Wabasha Counties. Women's Shelter, Inc. continues to grow and adapt to the needs of our community while following our mission and vision for a domestic violence-free future.

Contact Us

Who we Serve

We serve over 3,800 victims annually with 400-500 women and children staying at the shelter. Our families come from many different ethnic, socio-economic, educational, and religious backgrounds. We are the only shelter for victims of domestic violence within the 11 counties in Southeastern Minnesota. The average length of stay for women is 37 days, though many families stay longer depending on their needs.

Other services include transitional housing and satellite offices in Kasson, Olmsted County Government Center, Preston and Wabasha where our caring and compassionate advocacy staff provides individual support. Advocates provide assistance with safety planning, housing options, transportation, assistance with criminal and civil court issues, assistance in writing Orders for Protection and Harassment Orders, and help in applying for government assistance. Our advocates are passionate about helping families in need by assisting them every step of the way.

If you need assistance, please contact us at:

Women's Shelter, Inc.

PO Box 457
Rochester, MN 55903

(507) 285-1010 Crisis Line
(507) 285-1938 Business Line
(507) 287 0553 Fax Line


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Proud participant in the Combined Federal Campaign