In 1996, advocates from diverse ethnic communities developed strategic methods to address the increasing and unmet needs of battered refugee and immigrant women in the metro Atlanta area. After recognizing the many similar issues these women faced in their refugee and/or immigrant communities, advocates joined, across cultural differences, to end violence against women and men.
In 1998, the name “Tapestri” was formally adopted as the name of the coalition. Members of our coalition consisted of advocates who worked for culturally diverse, community-based organizations—many of which are listed on our Resources page.
Prior to October 2002, Tapestri functioned as a project of sister agency, Refugee Women’s Network. Thereafter, Tapestri became its own independent organization and created its own programs. Tapestri has evolved to work collaboratively with mainstream and ethnic organizations/communities to address multiple forms of gender-based violence and oppression in the refugee and immigrant communities. Founded by a group of refugee and immigrant advocates, it continues to be governed by women who represent the uniquely diverse communities Tapestri services.
Tapestri Inc. is dedicated to ending violence and oppression in refugee and immigrant communities, using culturally competent and appropriate methods. As advocates for immigrant and refugee families affected by domestic violence, sexual assault and exploitation, Tapestri Inc. is committed to using education, community organizing, direct services and advocacy to ameliorate the lives of these families.
Our name, “Tapestri,” symbolizes the different threads of society coming together to form a safe cover to protect its many colored communities.
We believe every person, men and women alike, have the right to live without fear. Tapestri exists to increase access to services for refugee and immigrant communities. We believe everyone should be able to seek and receive help and services which are respectful of his/her community, language, culture, gender, race, age, sexual orientation, disability and religious beliefs. Recognizing that this is a lifelong process, Tapestri staff, board members and partners attempt to live and model these values through interactions within our communities and amongst ourselves.
Illustrated in the diversity of backgrounds of Tapestri stakeholders, our philosophy is one of respect and celebration of our differences while sharing the belief that gender-based violence is inexcusable, regardless of individual cultural norms.
We do not see domestic violence, sexual assault and exploitation as the problem of an individual, woman or man, couple or even one particular community, but rather, a human rights issue. It is a phenomenon which perpetuates in societies whereby gender inequality and the use of violence are accepted as normal behavior. Tapestri seeks to educate individuals and agencies so these destructive norms will not be continued into the next generation.