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YWCA gets $11,000 HopeLine grant from Verizon Wireless to help domestic violence victims

Press release:

YWCA of Genesee County has received a grant for $11,000 thanks to the generosity of the Verizon Wireless HopeLine grant program.

HopeLine's goal is to provide funding for domestic violence organizations as a way to support client services, raise public awareness, train staff or help in other related areas.

YWCA is in the process of developing a transitional program for victims of domestic violence. Its name of "You Engaging Success" means exactly that for victims who want and need to move on from a crisis: success comes through counseling, training and being more secure with social, financial, emotional and physical aspects of life.

"As an organization that strives to empower women, YWCA is the perfect catalyst for change in domestic violence situations. We know that this type of program can offer victims a boost for their self-esteem while providing practical lessons," Executive Director Jeanne Walton said. "We want to offer hope to victims and help them to move on with their lives. You Engaging Success is saying YES to a life free from physical or emotional abuse."

This new program is slated to begin by early 2015. YWCA, a nonprofit agency based in Batavia, has set a goal to raise $100,000 to get it off the ground and flourishing over the next several years. YW's Domestic Violence Crisis & Prevention Services program serves approximately 700 new victims a year. If 10 to 20 people participate in the transitional program each year, that could have a residual effect on hundreds of others who are affected by domestic violence as friends, neighbors, family and coworkers, Walton said.

The new program would not be possible without generous businesses and organizations such as Verizon Wireless, she said.

Domestic violence is, unfortunately, a prevalent issue in our community, said Chris Felix, president of the Verizon Wireless Upstate New York Region.

"It’s organizations like the YWCA that are on the front lines of this issue, working hard every day to make our communities safer," Felix said. "At Verizon Wireless, we’re just fortunate to have some resources available to help organizations like the YWCA do their job. We thank the YWCA for everything they do to support domestic violence survivors in our community."

For more information about YW's programs and services, which also include quality child care and a Summer Adventure Camp for kids, call (585) 343-5808.

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