Volunteer Lorraine Boice works with Safe Shelter,
children of victims, in their organic garden.
(SAVANNAH, GA) SAFE Shelter Center for Domestic Violence Services is seeking the community’s help to raise $300,000 to continue serving a growing number of victims of domestic violence in the metro Savannah area during the COVID pandemic.
The organization is currently facing a 35 percent reduction of funding from across-the-board cuts in state aid and the cancellation of all fundraising events.
“Last year we helped more than 1,300 victims, including about 500 children, receive services,” said Cheryl Branch, executive director. “This year, domestic violence calls have risen nearly 20 percent since March in Chatham County due to the COVID virus. If history repeats itself, SAFE Shelter will experience another sharp uptick in the victim population as the summer heat progresses.”
Since 1979, SAFE Shelter has offered life-saving and life-changing services and programs to victims of domestic violence and their children free of charge. On average, it costs about $150 a week to feed a mother and three children, and that does not include the cost of additional victim assistance like mental, legal, and social services.
“For victims of domestic violence, quarantine means there’s nowhere to go.” Branch said. “In up to 60 percent of situations in which there is intimate partner violence, the perpetrator also abuses children in the household.”
SAFE Shelter’s annual giving gala was scheduled for November 21 but has been postponed indefinitely due to the COVID pandemic. The event typically raises more than $200,000 through corporate sponsorships, live and silent auctions and individual donations.
To meet the shortfall, Branch is asking the public to help SAFE Shelter continue its vital work by honoring someone with the meaningful gift of a financial donation.
Tribute donations can include memorials or recognizing special occasions such as birthdays, anniversaries, and weddings. SAFE Shelter will acknowledge gifts with a special message from the gift giver if included with the donation. As SAFE Shelter is an independent, unaffiliated 501©3 organization, all donations are tax-deductible to the full extent allowed by the law.
MORE INFORMATION ON SAFE SHELTER
Founded in 1979, SAFE Shelter Center for Domestic Violence Services is a 501©3 nonprofit organization committed to preventing domestic violence, protecting victims, and promoting positive change for families in need in our community. SAFE Shelter operates a 48-bed emergency shelter for victims of intimate partner violence and their children. All services are provided at no cost to the victim regardless of race, sex, sexual orientation, immigration status, culture, or religion. Leading to safe and stable lives, services include courtroom advocacy, counseling services, and case management. In the shelter’s long history, no one who has been actively involved with our services or programs has been killed by his/her abuser. For more information on SAFE Shelter, visit safeshelter.org or call 912.629.0026. To reach the 24-hour crisis line, call 912.629.8888.
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