A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

KCADV Purple Purse Challenge seeking support this month for emergency assistance programs

By Mary Kuhlman
Public News Service

It can take more than courage to leave an abusive situation, as money concerns often prevent survivors of domestic violence from getting away from their abuser.

And this month, the Kentucky Coalition Against Domestic Violence is asking folks across the Commonwealth to help raise money to provide emergency assistance for survivors of domestic abuse.

A lack of financial stability often prevent survivors of domestic violence from leaving an abusive situation. (Photo from Pixabay, via PNS)

Whitney Reynolds, AmeriCorps Program administer with the Kentucky Coalition Against Domestic Violence, is coordinating the Allstate Foundation Purple Purse Challenge in Kentucky. She explains many people who experience domestic violence will also be abused financially.

“Their abuser may have control of their finances or they’re not used to ever having control of their own finances, they’re not comfortable leaving because they don’t know how to sustain themselves financially,” she points out.

Every dollar raised goes directly to help an abuse survivor with supports that can help build independence, including legal services, housing, food, child care and transportation.

More than 1-in-3 women and 1-in-4 men have experienced violence from an intimate partner. Learn more at KCADV.org.

The Kentucky Coalition Against Domestic Violence runs an economic empowerment program that teaches domestic violence survivors about how to build economic stability. And Reynolds says each year the coalition helps more than 2,600 people.

“While we are working with them to create budgets and build credit and improve credit, there might be life events along the way that set them back so that’s why this emergency fund exists to not let them get so far off the path that they can’t continue on to be financially independent,” she explains.

In 2017, about $32,000 in emergency assistance was provided to more than one hundred survivors in Kentucky.

Reynolds says domestic violence seems to affect almost everyone.

“If it’s not direct then it’s indirectly through knowing somebody that’s been affected by domestic violence,” she states. “And we’re so excited to be able to provide this emergency funding to all of our programs around the state who are serving domestic violence survivors. ”

During October, Kentuckians are encouraged to raise awareness about domestic violence by wearing purple or donating to the Purple Purse Challenge.

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