History

Peaceful Paths Domestic Abuse Network, Inc. has been the certified domestic violence center in the tri county area since 1974. In 1978, the agency moved from operating only a crisis hotline to operating a full-time emergency shelter.  Since that time, the program has grown and expanded to include numerous outreach programs as well as maintaining its core of providing residential services for victims and survivors of domestic violence. Peaceful Paths began its mission in Gainesville as the Rape Information and Counseling Service (RICS), a grassroots organization that was formed to fight against sexual violence.  RICS established a hotline and soon began receiving phone calls from battered women.  In 1977 the name of the organization was changed to the Sexual and Physical Abuse Resource Center (SPARC) to better reflect the changing mission.  In January of 1978, SPARC was granted a lease for a shelter site and the facility opened with its first client on March 30, 1978.  In October of 2000, SPARC underwent another name change to refocus the community on the mission of ending domestic violence. Peaceful Paths, currently has 28 employees that work together to further the mission of ending domestic violence in our communities. A Board of Directors made up of local community citizens oversees the fiscal health, community support, and general wellbeing of the agency.