Building the Bridge from Surviving to Thriving!

Mother holding child on lap on a couch

“Carolyn’s Haven of Hope will be a place to heal in a safe environment with accountability on both ends,” said Cathlene Miner, founder of Hopefull Handbags Global. “This is life after shelter. Survivors would be in our programs and work towards a sustainable place of their own.”

Hopefull Handbags Global is a bridge organization that raises hope and helps survivors find BRIDGES of CONNECTION to resources, support, education, and self-growth. HH is a connector in bringing global awareness to domestic abuse and sustainability for survivors and their children. We realize the shelters may be the first stop, but they are not a long-term solution. We noticed a gap in services in our community and have since been on a mission to close the gap. Once survivors have taken the enormous step to leave their situations and go to a shelter, they run into several obstacles that often lead them right back to their abuser. The National Domestic Violence Hotline has reported that up to 85% of survivors who go to a shelter end up back in their abusive situations.

Our Vision: Carolyn’s Haven of Hope Bridge Housing


Carolyn’s Haven of Hope Bridge Housing will be the bridge to the other side.

It is not forever housing but a bridge to the other side for survivors that will include:

  • A home with multiple bedrooms in a safe neighborhood for one year.
  • A “House Mother” on the property”
  • Self-development, Self Perception, and sustainability workshops facilitated by Hopefull Handbags Global and their resources.
  • Counseling and Holistic Approach inner healing.
  • Financial planning with collaboration bank resources for opening accounts, budgeting, money management, and planning for permanent housing.
  • Entrepreneurship- internet access allows survivors and their children to access computers for work and school.
  • Development of a healthy routine for survivors and their children.
  • Education and guidance on service providers so that they have a cohesive team of professionals to make their life easier, more balanced and consistent.

How it Will Work

Carolyn’s Haven of Hope is not free housing, it comes with the responsibility of participating in and fully embracing being an active participant in their own lives. The length of stay will be one year and spots will be filled by application and interview.


  1. Survivors must have a regular job or be ready to be employed.
  2. Survivors will pay rent (on a scaled basis).
  3. Survivors will have to pass a background check and drug test.
  4. A cooperative contract will be in place between the survivor and Hopefull Handbags Global for their personal and collaborative journey to their future safety and sustainability.
  5. Survivors will be responsible for contributing to the upkeep of the home.

How it Will Help Survivors

  • They will have time to become more independent in a safe sustainable environment
  • They will accept responsibility for their surroundings
  • They will become more economically independent
  • They will learn about other supportive economic and training programs
  • They will build more confidence and self-esteem from the INSIDE out

How You Can Help!

This is a very exciting time because we’re starting to build a community of sponsors and donors, and WE WANT YOU!

We are raising funds to purchase a 3- or 4-bedroom home in a safe neighborhood in or around St. Augustine, Florida. Any amount will help! Click the button below to donate.

Have questions or want more information?

Contact Gabriela van Zuilen, Director of Philanthropy & Community Engagement, Carolyn’s Haven of Hope at [email protected]

Have questions or want more information?

Contact Gabriela Van Zuilen, Director of Philanthropy & Community Engagement

Gabriela van Zuilen; women with short brown hair smiling
Mother with baby and toddler on couch looking at tablet
One young female child and one little bit older male child looking out a window