BENEFITING: Domestic Violence & Child Advocacy Center
EVENT DATE: Feb 14, 2014
The Domestic Violence & Child Advocacy Center has a mission close to our hearts and that is why we are so excited to be kicking off our fundraising effort on Valentine's Day! While we have worked with the agency for several years, we have recently been inspired to step up in a major way to help with a critical need. We have pledged to raise $20,000 for their expanded Safe & Sound Supervised Visitation Center beginning on Valentine’s Day – AND - to inspire your generous support, we will personally match donations up to a total of $20,000. EVERY DOLLAR WILL ASSIST THOSE FAMILIES IN NEED.Their work keeping women and children safe from abuse and healing those devastated by family violence is something we believe needs everyone’s support.
We hope you will read the information we have provided below to learn more about DVCAC, their extraordinary work and their campaign to keep more children safe in our community. While we enjoy supporting numerous causes in the Cleveland community- DVCAC’s Champions of Childhood Capital Campaign is something we felt needed special attention. It takes a village, after all, and we hope our extended family and friends will support our campaign, become champions, and help us reach our goal! Please forward this e-mail to your family members and friends to ensure safety in our community!
How Your Donation Helps!
□ Supreme Champion - $10,000 – to help fund construction of the new Visitation Center
• A room at the new center will be co-named in the donor’s honor.
• Donors will be recognized at spring 2014 “Breakfast of Champions” event, and provided 4 tickets.
• Participate in a photo shoot to be featured in a Plain Dealer advertisement.
• Additional recognition on DVCAC’s website, monthly newsletter, and annual report.
Donors at the following levels will be recognized on DVCAC’s website, newsletter, annual report, in the Breakfast of Champions program and on a recognition plaque at the new Visitation Center.
□ Shining Light - $7,500 – to help fund electrical work including fire and safety lighting
□ The Color of Comfort - $5,000 – to help paint the family rooms and the interior of the new facility
□ Guardian of Safety - $2,500 - to help install exterior safety fences and gates
□ Signs of Healing- $1,000 – to help purchase interior and exterior signage
□ Family Gathering - $500 to help purchase table and chairs for the new family kitchen
□ Warm Welcome - $250 to help furnish the waiting areas
□ Safe Visit- $125 to sponsor one visit for a family at the center
□ Art Therapy-$50 to supply art supplies for the children at the center
□ Play with Me-$25 to supply a board game for the center
Domestic Violence & Child Advocacy Center (DVCAC) is the result of a merger between the Domestic Violence Center and Bellflower Center for Prevention of Child Abuse and has over 35 years of history leading the community in responding to victims of domestic violence and child abuse. The agency works to break the cycle of abuse via prevention, intervention, and community education. Their mission is to empower individuals, educate the community and advocate for justice to end domestic violence and child abuse. DVCAC is the only organization in Cuyahoga County devoted solely to the issue of domestic violence and child abuse serving 32,000 in FY 2013.
The agency provides a wide range of services for children, teens, and adults including:
o Emergency Shelter for women and their children in immediate danger
o 24 Hour Helplines for domestic violence and family abuse
o Prevention /Community Education (Programming in schools and community settings as well as trainings for allied professionals);
o Individual Counseling /Art Therapy
o Group Services (counseling, education, and support groups for adults, teens and children)
o Supervised Visitation
o Justice System Advocacy
o Latina Domestic Violence Project
o Ujima Program (Culturally sensitive services for African Americans)
About the Safe & Sound Supervised Visitation Center
One of DVCAC’s most important programs helping to protect children is the Safe & Sound Supervised Visitation Center. Facilitating nearly 1400 visits each year, the center supports the most vulnerable children whose family has been splintered by violence, abuse or neglect or other factors such as substance abuse or mental health. Services are in high demand as agencies such as County’s Division of Children & Family Services, Juvenile Court and Domestic Relations Court seek to protect children from further traumatic exposure while making visitation with a non-residential parent a part of a custody or case plan. Especially in cases of domestic violence, there is a high risk of violence when parents to come together to facilitate a visit and the child may also be at risk to be a target of abuse, witness violence or even be subject to kidnapping.
Testimonials about the Safe & Sound Visitation Center
• Quote from the Honorable Diane M. Palos, Administrative Judge of Cuyahoga County Domestic Relations Court.
“There is nothing more critical than keeping children and families safe! Many families with cases in Domestic Relations Court need DVCAC's Safe and Sound Supervised Visitation Center for safety reasons. Unfortunately, there are not enough slots for children and families. The expansion of the Visitation Center is vital to meeting the needs of children and families in our county.”
• Quote from Tammy Chapman-Wagner, Deputy Director, Cuyahoga County Department of Children & Family Services.
"Our primary focus is always child safety. The Safe and Sound Visitation Center allows kids a safe, comfortable and neutral place to visit with family and begin to build trust. Each successful visit leads our families toward our goal that all children are protected and nurtured within a family and supported by the community. DVCAC is a crucial partner for children and families throughout our county and we support their efforts to expand this service so even more families can benefit from this program."
Numerous studies have shown that maintaining the role of both parents in a child’s life can lead to increased cognitive functioning, less depression, better school performance, and greater life satisfaction. As an alternative to banning all contact between the non-residential parent and child, Supervised Visitation allows the child to continue to feel connected to their parent while also feeling safe. Here is what some of the kids say about the center:
“What I like best is playing with my mommy” - 7 year old girl
“I like that I can visit with my Dad at the center and feel safe” - 16 year old boy
The agency has on-site security and follows strict safety protocols that keep the child at the center of all activities. Trained monitors also help the children learn behaviors of a healthy relationship while building trust and mutual respect.
Many of the parents in the program need support and education to nurture their child’s development.The center uses modeling techniques in conjunction with educational classes to help non-residential parents understand how to communicate and connect with their children in a healthy, non-threatening manner. From teaching dads how to play with dolls to keeping the conversation focused on the positive, monitors are there to offer guidance that ultimately can lead to stronger families.
Safe & Sound Supervised Visitation Center Expansion and Capital Campaign
Currently, the Safe & Sound Visitation Center is housed in temporary space and has a long waiting list for services. DVCAC is proud to announce that it has received $450,000 in federal funding to expand the center in order to meet the community’s needs. Unfortunately, those funds do not allow for renovation or moving costs therefore the agency is currently seeking support for a capital campaign for Phase 1 of this expansion. DVCAC needs to secure an additional $460,000 in order to make the vision of a warm, welcoming space, which is able to meet the community demand, a reality.
The expanded center will include 5 family visitation rooms, a family kitchen, a recreation area, two separate waiting areas as well as a healing room for the residential parent to relax and de-stress while they wait for their child. Our goal is to facilitate an additional 900 visits annually in the new space for a total exceeding 2300 visits each year. The campaign kicked off with the signing of a letter of intent in late December 2013 on a building in the midtown neighborhood of Cleveland. Construction is scheduled to begin in April and be completed by July 2014.