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POUGHKEEPSIE – Assemblyman Jonathan Jacobson (D, Newburgh) has announced a $30,000 Assembly grant for maintenance and repair work at Grace Smith House, the Poughkeepsie-based domestic violence organization.
“Domestic violence is a long-standing problem, but—as with too many other issues—it’s a problem that has become worse during the COVID pandemic,” said Jacobson. “As residents stayed home to avoid infection, incidents of domestic violence increased, and many victims were trapped with their abusers and unable to seek help.”
The lawmaker said the organization provides a range of services, from crisis management and risk assessment to counseling and legal help to programming to help children recover from the trauma of abuse,” continued Jacobson.
“This funding will go to help Grace Smith House make much-needed repairs to their shelter, where they offer safe housing and wraparound services to individuals and their children seeking to escape an unsafe situation,” he said.
In 2019, Grace Smith House handled 1,721 hotline calls, provided emergency shelter and services to 87 women, three men and 61 children, and served 19 adults and 32 children in its transitional housing program. It also provided advocacy and support services to 214 adults and 101 children in their non-residential program and helped file 1,030 Orders of Protection in Family Court and accompanied 157 victims of domestic violence to court a total of 440 times.
Group Executive Director Branka Bryan said this funding will be used towards their Transitional Housing program. “Since it first opened in 1988, this program has been a life-saving option for families leaving shelter who needed a safe place to reside as they worked on rebuilding their lives. Maintenance and repairs to the building helps us continue to offer this program to victims in our community,” she said.