Local domestic violence centers receive government grants

KANSAS CITY, Kan. - Several domestic violence centers in the Kansas City metro area received grants from the federal government this month.

Governor Sam Brownback's office announced more than $1 million in grants as part of the Federal Family Violence Prevention and Services Act.

SAFEHOME, Inc. received the most money from this grant at $105,849. Executive director Janee' Hanzlick said this money is essential in the shelter's day-to-day operations.

"It provides some of the behind-the-scenes support," Hanzlick said. "But support that is crucial so we can continue to provide those services."

Hanzlick said the money will go to the shelter supervisor, who ensures the shelter is always ready to accept victims.

A chunk will also go to housekeeping, so when victims arrive, they have a safe and comfortable place to stay.

Some of the money will also go to the maintenance director.

"When the plumbing goes bad or something breaks down," said Hanzlick. "Because of this grant, we can immediately fix those things."

SAFEHOME's yearly budget is $3.3 million and 40 percent comes from government grants.  Hanzlick said every dollar they receive is put to good use to ensure the safety of victims in Johnson County.

The Willow Domestic Violence Center in Lawrence also received money from this grant. This center serves victims in Douglas, Franklin and Jefferson Counties. Its yearly budget is about $700,000 so the $51,764 makes a big difference in the services it can offer.

"Good mental health and good physical health are important in getting a job, getting a place of one's own and taking care of the children," said Joan Schultz, Executive Director.

The FVPSA grant will fund the health and wellness program at Willow Domestic Violence Center, as well as the Franklin County office so victims there have a place to turn.

"You may not know it, but you have known someone who has experienced domestic violence," said Schultz.

The other metro centers that received money were the Alliance Against Family Violence in Leavenworth County that received $38,005.  In Wyandotte County, Friends of Yates received $47,894 in FVPSA grant money.

If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, please consider calling these numbers for help.

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