Safer Futures (Family & Community Services Inc.)

The Portage Foundation awarded a grant of $3,000.00 to Safer Futures Domestic Violence and Resource Center. Safer Futures is a program of Family & Community Services Inc. whose mission is to lessen the scope of intimate partner violence, sexual assault and stalking in Portage County.

Safer Futures is Portage County’s only resource for domestic violence, with intimate partner violence affecting the lives of thousands of families in Portage County. In 2019, Safter Futures shelter answered 697 crisis calls and provided shelter services to 79 victims and 64 children with a total of 3460 bed nights.

The awarded grant will assist in the purchases of necessary learning items, such as computers and desks for the children at Safer Futures.

“Currently, we have kids that are being homeschooled and one of the things that we don’t have here is a media space, whether that be desks or computers to have the kids feel like they’re in a school setting” Donya Buchanan, Director of Domestic Violence and Visitation Services said.

The shelter provides child advocacy, giving support, advocacy, development and adjustment services for participating youth.

“This is going to help us set this space up for kids in terms of being able to purchase some desks and computers so that they have a space that is conducive to learning” Buchanan said.

With Safter Futures being the only domestic violence shelter in Portage County, there has been an increase in the shelter’s services since the COVID-19 pandemic.

The number of calls that we have seen has increased from March to around July” Buchanan said.

“We had over 350 calls from our crisis line which was about 150% increase from what we saw this time last year, so this proves that there is definitely a need for the services that we provide.”

The shelter staff consists of domestic violence specialists that are available 24 hours a day to assist the victims and children and answer the crisis line.

I simply want to say thank you to the Portage Foundation” Buchanan said. “There are so many organizations that are in need of your help and there are so many organizations that are grateful for your help. We are so thankful for the grant that the Portage Foundation has provided us for Safer Futures.”