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October 11, 2016
Bentley awards $1.1 million to aid abuse victims in southeast Alabama

MONTGOMERY—A trio of nonprofit centers dedicated to assisting child abuse and domestic violence victims in southeast Alabama are receiving grants totaling $1.1 million awarded by Gov. Robert Bentley.

“Professional, caring assistance is invaluable to those who have been victimized and need someone to help them take the first steps toward recovery,” Bentley said. “I commend the staff and volunteers of these organizations who work diligently to help victims and their families recover and seek justice.” 

The House of Ruth will use grants totaling $686,278 to continue assisting domestic violence victims in Barbour, Bullock, Coffee, Covington, Dale, Geneva, Henry, Houston and Pike counties. The organization provides a 24-hour crisis line, emergency shelter for victims and their children, counseling, case management, advocacy and educational programs. House of Ruth will use a portion of the funds to make needed repairs to its shelter that houses victims.

The agency also is one of 17 domestic violence centers in the state to receive additional funding through the state’s Domestic Violence Trust Fund. The fund, created through the state marriage license fee, is distributed quarterly to the agencies and is used to provide shelter for victims and to conduct educational and prevention programs.

The Southeast Alabama Child Advocacy Center will use $265,504 in grants to continue helping victims in Coffee, Covington, Dale, Geneva, Henry, Houston and Pike counties. The Dothan-based center offers counseling, therapy programs and a child-friendly atmosphere for conducting investigative interviews. Advocates employed by the center help victims and their families navigate the criminal justice system.
The center also presents educational programs about child abuse prevention to law enforcement agencies, churches, schools and other community groups throughout the year. Matching funds of $66,376 will supplement the grants.

With a $138,888 grant the Exchange Center for Child Abuse Prevention will continue its prevent abuse and aid victims in Barbour, Coffee, Dale, Geneva, Henry, Houston and Pike counties. The center provides free individual counseling as well as family and group trauma counseling and support for victims of child abuse, domestic violence and sexual assault. It also provides parent and guardian counseling and education services to help prevent abuse and domestic violence. Matching funds of $18,410 will supplement the grants.

The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grants from funds made available by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Justice. ADECA manages an array of programs that support law enforcement and traffic safety, economic development, energy conservation, workforce development, water resource management and recreation development.

“ADECA’s partnerships with these programs in southeast Alabama brings essential help to those who have suffered from abuse,” ADECA Director Jim Byard Jr. said. “While it is unfortunate that these services are necessary, the professional assistance gives victims and their families hope for a better future.”

In addition to grants, the organizations depend individual, private donations to ensure that a full range of services is always available to victims.


Contact: Russell Sellers, Mike Presley

For more information, visit:  http://www.adeca.alabama.gov/