January 22, 2009

Shelter needs daycare, exam area

Below I have shared a plea for help from the Safe Harbor Domestic Violence Shelter for an exam area and daycare that is desperately needed.  Even in this time of financial hardship for everyone, there's so many that need more and are having it harder then we are, and this is one of those cases.

At this time, victims must be transferred up to 30 minutes to be able to be examined, something to some may seem not much, but to a victim, it's an eternity where they can sit and contemplate what they are going through and be in fear.  Having an onsite exam area is crucial for many reasons, and I hope that the word gets out and that the community can help this shelter in their needs.  For, you never know when you or someone you love may be in need of it...

As for the daycare, I can attest to the fact that that is a needed thing to have in a shelter.  When women get out with children, and the daycare's in the area are full and have a waiting list, not to mention if you don't have a vehicle to drive across town to a daycare that does have room, it's something that can truly make a victim go back to her abuser.  To know that your children are taken care of in a safe environment, somewhere where the abuser can't get to them, is truly a peace of mind that victims need.  Not to mention that if a victim can't find daycare in a timely fashion, and can't work because of no childcare, they are only given a specific amount of time to get a job once in a shelter, and talk about stress!

When I was in a shelter with my 2 1/2 year old son, I couldn't find a daycare that had any openings, and had to work.  So, asked one of the residents if she could watch my son since she had 2 children of her own that she had to watch, and she didn't work at the time.  This didn't go too bad for a time, but then she left the shelter to move in with her boyfriend.  Not her abuser, but a new one.  Anyway, things went from bad to worse...It ended up that the ones that she stayed with were drug dealers (not bad people per se, but not the life style I wanted to be around, and not somewhere I wanted my son), and no-one was working to bring any money in.  They lived on her food stamps, and I would bring home at night the left over food from McDonald's that I was working at at the time, and wake everyone up so that they could have dinner.  I would give her $100 a week to watch my son, what other choice did I have?  One night, after coming home from a different job late at night, I found out that they had had a gun fight at the house with the kids inside.  Came back to find the owner of the home with a gun sitting across his lap, and shortly was able to move out of that area closer to my parents so that I could have familial support.

Yes, most don't have to go through something like I did, but there's many stories out there of Moms that have gone back because of lack adequate childcare (not an option for me), or their children have been put at risk.  This is something that must be addressed, and this shelter needs that help! 

Even if it's $5-$25 that you can give, please give to this cause!  Every little bit helps!

FARMINGTON - UT— A daycare and rape exam area are among pressing needs for Safe Harbor Domestic Violence Shelter, its director says.

She said Dixon & Associates architects has already prepared plans for a building that could be constructed adjacent to existing facilities. Cost is estimated at $220,000 for the building and $170,000 for an exam room.

“Your citizens are going out of the county for Code R exams,” Card said. Other than the county jail, there is no place where adults can be tested within the county, she said.

The new building has been a desire of the nonprofit shelter’s board of trustees for several years. Plans for the new facility were first revealed in the Clipper a couple of years ago.

The shelter, in place for nearly 12 years, has seen a huge increase in usage over the past year. Card has said previously that while there were slow times during certain parts of the year, that is no longer the case.

It has been necessary, at times, to find space for victims in other locations, until slots opened at the facility, she said.

Original Article

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