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Slow start for campaign to build women’s shelter

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Few turn out for event at Red Orchard

By Cameron Koch

A camping fundraiser for a new women’s shelter in town wasn’t quite the success event organizer’s were hoping for.

Only a handful of people showed up Saturday afternoon at Red Orchard Park in Shelbyville for an overnight camping fundraiser organized by ACT Now Against Domestic Violence (ANADV). ANADV is a non-profit organization dedicated to aiding victims and survivors of domestic violence. Tickets for the camping event were $75 for a family of any size, $55 for couples, and $45 for singles. The money was to be used towards the creation of a new women’s shelter in Shelbyville.

“We are making the best of it, but we didn’t do a lot of advertising,” said ANADV spokesperson Antoinette Taylor at the event as she prepared food for the few campers. “It was mostly word of mouth.”

Some of the proposed services to be provided by ANADV at the shelter will include psychotherapy counseling, career development, and emergency and transitional housing for both women and their children. The group will also conduct outreach programs for women without housing and provide transitional housing groups.

More than 2,345 women and 1,865 children were residents of domestic violence shelters in Kentucky in 2012, according to data from the Kentucky Domestic Violence Association. Other organizations that already provide shelter, counseling, and/or transitional housing services in the county include Operation Care and the Center for Women and Families.

Taylor said the organization is in the early stages of receiving federal and state grants to fund the creation of the shelter. Even with almost no donations made, she said the grants should be able to cover the creation of a shelter. However, without community support Taylor said the shelter wouldn’t be around for long.

“We meet the credentials for the grants,” Taylor said. “But we need volunteers, we need community support to sustain it.”

Taylor and those in attendance still enjoyed sitting around the campfire cooking smores, even if attendance was low and little money was raised.

“This is a beginning,” she said.