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On Thursday, as a part of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, I visited SAFEHOME in the Kansas City area to learn about the domestic violence agency's programs for the community. Many Kansans may assume that domestic violence does not occur in their neighborhoods or among their friends. Unfortunately, this is not the case -- and it brings fear, hopelessness and depression into the lives of every victim. SAFEHOME provides more than a shelter for those needing a place to live to escape from abuse; they provide advocacy, counseling, an in-house attorney, and assistance finding a job. The agency also provides education in the community to prevent abuse. I was also pleased to learn that SAFEHOME is recognized as a Four Star Charity for excellence in fiscal management and transparency.

I had the opportunity to meet with Jann, a "thriver" who benefited from the comprehensive services offered at SAFEHOME to her and her son. She is a thriver because she now owns her own home, car and business and her son is straight A student. Jann believes SAFEHOME is a "building full of Angels" for what they did to help her re-establish her life without violence. I appreciate her sharing her story with me and hearing firsthand how SAFEHOME assisted her at a critical point in her life. I will continue to support reauthorization of funding for the Violence Against Women Act to help agencies like SAFEHOME break the cycle of violence. A special thank you to Sharon Katz, Executive Director who is retiring for after 20 plus years for all she has done to help victims of abuse. And thanks to Board President Don Curtis, Executive Director Sharon Katz, Associate Director Janee' Hanzlick, and Kelly Willoughby, Development Director for their good work and the informative visit.

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