Resources come as nation marks Domestic Violence Awareness Month
Congressman Brian Higgins announced $450,000 in federal funding, through the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Violence Against Women, has been awarded for the Helping Others through Protection and Empowerment (HOPE of WNY) program. The initiative is a joint project of the Family Justice Center and Community Services for Every1, which expands domestic violence support and services to people with physical and intellectual disabilities.
“HOPE of WNY is an initiative designed to ensure people of all abilities, who have been threatened or abused, have a safe place to turn,” Higgins said. “This funding will further the good work of this collaborative project in providing support and a way forward for those in need.”
President and CEO Mindy Cervoni said, “Community Services for Every1, in partnership with the Family Justice Center, is grateful for the award from the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Violence Against Women. Together, both agencies can continue our collaboration providing assistance and support to the underserved community, including those with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Providing ample supports, resources and a safe place to live is our No. 1 goal.”
The award is provided through the Transitional Housing Assistance for Victims of Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Sexual Assault and Stalking grant program. These grants support programs across the country, providing six to 24 months of transitional housing and support services to domestic violence victims in need of a secure home situation.
The Family Justice Center, in partnership with Community Services for Every1, will use the funding to support more survivors in temporary housing with a focus on meeting the needs of the underserved, disabled, and limited English-speaking populations. In addition, the center will provide safety planning, child care, transportation, financial counseling, job training, legal assistance, and other support services as needed. The project will also allow for an additional staff member to implement the program and provide follow-up support once permanent housing is secured.
The press release noted, “HOPE of WNY helps to ensure that such individuals experiencing domestic violence are identified and linked to resources that provide help and healing. It is the first of its kind in the region.
“October is Domestic Violence Awareness month. If you or someone you know is involved in an unhealthy or abusive relationship, contact the Family Justice Center at 716-585-SAFE (7233). In the case of an emergency, dial 9-1-1; or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.