Local Programs Reach Out to Victims of Domestic Violence


By Brittany Bivins

Every year, Montgomery Police receive between 8,000 and 12,000 calls about domestic violence, according to local advocacy groups. Thousands of victims reach out for help every year. Now local organizations are reaching out with new tools to help those people.

Domestic violence survivors like Sunny Borum know how difficult escaping a violent situation can be for children.

"Kids go into a situation like that and they're already scared with their mom or their dad, you know, away from their environment, to a new facility and all of a sudden their mother is taken away from them, to be interviewed," Borum said.

But the new clubhouse for children at one place family justice center aims to help them feel safe.

"This place will give children a distraction, someplace where they can go where they can have fun and they don't realize that their mom is not in the room, they can sneak out if they have to."

On Wednesday, the center cut the ribbon on that addition. The organization helps hundreds of victims of domestic violence every year. This addition cost $2,500 dollars, money youth volunteers raised.

"There's so many kids that come through here and sometimes, when they're sad, they just want to get away from the open," said Laura Grace Henry, who worked with youth group Bridge Builders to raise the money for the clubhouse.

"What's inside is hope. There's a great big pile of hope. Hope is a good thing for children of domestic violence because they're hoping to have what every other child takes for granted-a night without a fight," said Steve Searcy, Director of the Family Justice Center.

To make sure that happens, Alabama First Lady Dianne Bentley is spearheading a project with verizon to make sure families have a chance to make a call to get out. hope line has collected 10,000 cell phones in the last year to give to victims of domestic violence.

"It gives these survivors a way to call for help. You know, so often these people don't have a cell phone or they don't have use. This way, these phones are programmed to call local law enforcement or to call a friend to come and get them and allow them to get help," she said.

If you know someone who is in a domestic violence situation and needs help, they can call One Place Family Justice Center at 262-7378.


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