Last week the Yadkin County Community Foundation presented a grant to the Sparrow’s House of Yadkin County. The Sparrow’s House, the first shelter for victims of domestic violence in the county, opened its doors in November of last year.
“The Yadkin County Community Foundation is pleased to support the Sparrow’s House through a grant award that will assist in expanding the facility from five to 16 clients,” said Bonnie Lasky, chairman of the YCCF Legacy Fund Grant Committee. “Providing shelter and support to victims of domestic violence and their families is a genuine need not met by any other shelter or organization in our community. Whether through an organizational grant like the Yadkin County Community Foundation or through personal donations, any amount could very well make a life-changing difference to an individual or family coping with domestic violence.”
The shelter is funded primarily through grants and donations from area foundations, businesses and individuals. The shelter will be eligible for state funding next year, but until that time, Executive Director Jennifer Bowman said the group depends on donations for area groups and they are grateful for the support received so far.
“The community support has been a tremendous help to my clients,” Bowman said. “That is extremely important to us that we have county and community support, at this point that is our greatest need — financial support.”
So far the Sparrow’s House has received grants and donations from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, E.H. Barnard Trust, Yadkinville Rotary, Yadtel, Cain Tire and Automotive, the town of Yadkinville and the Yadkin County Community Foundation.
Bowman said area churches also have been supporting the shelter through monetary donations and food donations.
The shelter has been able to provide more than 800 nights of safety for victims of domestic violence so far this year. Other area organizations such as the Department of Social Services, YVEDDI, Compassion Care and Daymark Recovery Services have been invaluable in supporting the Sparrow’s House clients, Bowman said.
“There are a lot of groups within our area here that are able to help our clients,” she said.
Bowman said that making the decision to leave a domestic violence situation is normally the hardest step. She is quick to remind that domestic violence is not always manifested in physical abuse, but is often emotional abuse and the threat of physical violence. Some clients may come to the shelter only for a night or two until restraining orders can be filed, or they may stay anywhere from three to five months until they are able to find a new home.
Bowman meets with clients weekly to help them with finding a job and other life skills they need to get away from their abuser and live on their own. So many victims, she said, have been alienated from society by their abuser and taught that they are worthless. Aside from providing a safe place, giving victims back their sense of self-worth and self-confidence is a big part of what the Sparrow’s House attempts to offer clients.
The shelter has a 24-hour hotline for victims of abuse which can be reached at 336-677-1010. The shelter accepts donations at The Sparrow’s House, P.O. Box 301, Yadkinville, NC 27055. For additional information about the shelter, Bowman may be reached at 336-354-3434.
Kitsey E. Burns may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter @RippleReporterK.