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November 8, 2017
Gov. Ivey awards grant to assist immigrant victims of domestic violence

MONTGOMERY— Gov. Kay Ivey has awarded a $418,863 grant to a nonprofit agency that provides aid specifically tailored to the needs of domestic violence victims in Alabama whose families originate from south Asia.

The funds will enable AshaKiran Inc. to continue operating a 24-hour crisis line and provide emergency services for victims. AshaKiran serves immigrants from India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Volunteers formed the Huntsville-based organization to offer culturally specific social services and support to South Asian ethnic minorities who, according to organization officials, tend not to utilize social services due to cultural and language barriers.

“All domestic violence victims deserve caring, professional assistance when escaping abusive situations,” Ivey said. “I commend the staff and volunteers of AshaKiran for their efforts to help more people across the state by making these resources available.”

The organization provides training to help shelter programs and first-responders learn to provides services in a culturally sensitive manner. AshaKiran also makes translators available to domestic violence shelters throughout the state to ensure that a language barrier doesn’t separate a victim from needed professional assistance.

The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grant from funds made available by the U.S. Department of Justice. ADECA administers an array of programs supporting law enforcement and traffic safety, economic development, energy conservation, water resource management and recreation development.

“Gov. Ivey understands that the services provided at emergency shelters are a vital part of the recovery process for those who have suffered domestic abuse,” ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell said. “This partnership with AshaKiran is a way to reach victims who may have cultural or language barriers and provide them with access to these important services.”

Ivey notified Delois Smith, chairperson of the organization’s board, that she had approved the grant.

Contact: Mike Presley or Jennifer Ardis Elmore

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