Submitted by SafePlace Olympia

The Mary Kay Foundation awarded SafePlace a $20,000 unrestricted grant to support local survivors of domestic violence in Thurston County. This donation was part of $3 million in grants to 150 domestic violence shelters across the country in honor of Domestic Violence Awareness Month. This year’s grant contribution brings the Foundation’s total investment in its shelter grant program to $50 million.

The Mary Kay Foundation was established in 1996 with the overarching purpose of supporting issues impacting women. In 2000, The Foundation expanded to include ending domestic violence as part of its mission. The Foundation is committed to funding the life-saving work of women’s shelters and the annual shelter grant program has helped finance critical needs including emergency shelter, transitional housing, counseling and legal aid. All of these resources support women and children as they seek refuge and relief on their journey to an abuse-free life. This year, more than 1,200 organizations applied for the Mary Kay Foundation shelter grants.

“At Mary Kay, we believe in helping women improve their circumstances and live their best lives. One in four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime and it is our responsibility to support the women’s shelters that aid these survivors,” said President of The Mary Kay Foundation Board of Directors Michael Lunceford. “At the heart of The Foundation’s work is the shelter grant program which is actively supported by our independent sales force. We’re proud that our commitment makes such a powerful impact in local communities and in the lives of domestic violence survivors across the country.”

According to the National Network to End Domestic Violence, more than 72,000 adult and child victims receive domestic violence services across the United States in just one day. Unfortunately, in the same period of time, more than 11,000 requests for services are unmet due to a lack of resources.

SafePlace has been working as a dual domestic violence and sexual assault provider agency in Thurston County since 1981. Their general purpose is to empower survivors to make decisions about their lives, by offering supportive services, resources and information. In 2017, SafePlace served 1,417 survivors of domestic and sexual violence, provided 8,462 shelter bednights and 25,386 meals, and responded to 316 sexual assaults.

“As we strive daily to end violence in our community, SafePlace is actively standing in the gap for our survivors,” said Sarah M. Lloyd, Executive Director at SafePlace. “Our services offer all community members a place to land when the challenges of enduring violence come to a head…As a community, we must continue to expand the space available to meet one another with survivor-centered care, while decreasing the safety that people feel to abuse our neighbors among us.”

Applications for the 2019 shelter grant program will be available in January 2019. Please visit marykayfoundation.org for more information. To view the complete list of 2018 shelter grant recipients, click here.

About The Mary Kay Foundation

The Mary Kay Foundation was created in 1996 and its two-fold mission includes funding women’s cancer research and ending domestic violence. Over the course of more than two decades, The Mary Kay Foundation has awarded more than $78 million to women’s shelters and domestic violence service providers, as well as cancer research programs and related causes throughout the United States. To learn more about The Mary Kay Foundation and its mission, visit marykayfoundation.org or call 1-877-MKCARES (652-2737).

About SafePlace

SafePlace’s mission is to strive to put an end to sexual and domestic violence and advocate for personal and societal change through crisis intervention and education.  SafePlace primarily serves clients from Thurston County, Washington, as well as surrounding counties and nationwide when proximity to an abuser poses a safety risk.  At SafePlace our core programs include our emergency confidential shelter, community education, and community advocacy services.

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