From: Lisa Shafran
President, Turning Point Domestic Violence Services
As the school year comes to a close, we are reminded how important our work is in educating youths to prevent domestic and dating violence in the next generation. We are grateful to have been provided the opportunity to expose young people to the importance of healthy relationships. At the same time our shelter is over capacity, which is sobering evidence domestic violence continues to be a critical problem in our community.
However we take great and grateful comfort that we are not tackling this issue alone. Evidence of community support of our mission is present everywhere:
- Dance Marathon 2016 was led by incredible students and mentors, sponsored by local businesses and staffed by countless community volunteers. Community leaders made presentations, and the Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department kept us safe.
- Many supported Giving Tuesday. Kenny Glass provided the match that allowed us to raise $40,000 to provide new HVAC systems for the shelter to keep those who are in need warm and safe.
- Students chose Turning Point as the focus of their senior projects, thus providing much-needed awareness and support for our programs.
- Many supported Denim Day by wearing jeans as a visible sign and statement against sexual assault.
- Employers referred and supported victims in the workplace.
- Landlords provided safe and affordable housing to those looking to start a new, violence-free life.
- Teachers opened their classrooms to our professional staff, allowing us to bring information about healthy relationships to all students.
- Organizations sponsored events to benefit Turning Point.
- Men of Bartholomew County stood up against domestic violence on the steps of City Hall and modeled behavior for our youths.
- The Columbus Police Department and the Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department demonstrated outstanding commitment and partnership.
- Countless volunteers mowed lawns; donated food, clothing and household items; cleaned the shelter; and performed endless other tasks.
- Local faith-based organizations included our work in their missions.
- 911 operators calmly led victims to help and safety.
- First responders, the medical community and the court system assisted.
- Our partner social service organizations provided services to our clients. Our ability to refer our clients for their services is life-saving.
- Bartholomew County United Way provided tremendous support.
- Many generous donors passionately supported our mission, providing much-needed financial support.
- Local media brought attention to our cause.
These examples of community support helped the victims of domestic violence by setting a great example of commitment for the future generations in our community. They join us in our dream of a safe, violence-free Bartholomew County. Community is not everything, it is the only thing that works.