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Domestic violence victims are using their experiences to help others

Domestic violence victims are using their experiences to help others. Claudia Coco (WGXA News)

MACON, Ga -- H.O.P.E. (Helping Other People Endure), a new ministry started by Cynthia Cotton, met on Saturday for their "Hats and Pearls" event. People who attended the event purchased tickets, and all the money raised by those tickets go to domestic violence victims.

Cynthia Cotton and Martha Denmark are both survivors and now they're using their voices to speak out against domestic violence.

"As a child, I was molested," said Cotton. " Went into the military, I was harrassed and abused."

"I was abused in my marriage for 18 years," Denmark said.

Denmark said she tried to paint the picture of a perfect life.

"I didn't have a lot of people to talk to," she said. "I was ashamed, embarrassed. I didn't think nobody would believe me."

Denmark said she finally escaped.

"I always felt like I was one of the blessed ones to get out alive with four children," Denmark said.

Denmark said this organization gives her the opportunity to give back, and she's grateful for the opportunity because others aren't so lucky.

"Thank God I that I'm here to give back," Denmark said.

Cotton, the Founder of H.O.P.E., said so many people have come to her with their stories since she started sharing her story.

"At the end of the day, it's not about me," said Cotton. "It's about helping everyone else. If it can just help one person, I have done my job."

She said if you need help, advice, or if you would just like to talk about H.O.P.E. she will be more than happy to talk.

"If anyone needs to contact me, you can contact me with Beulaland Bible Church," said Cotton.

Saturday Cotton's "Hats and Pearls" event raised over $500 dollars for victims of domestic violence.

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