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Newhouse - Breaking the Cycle

Written by  June 30, 2004

Did you know that half of all women are beaten by their significant other at least once in their lives? Did you know that every nine seconds a woman is battered in the United States? That’s 400 women per hour, 9600 women a day. The Kansas City, Missouri Police Department reports an average of 21.6 percent domestic violence arrests a day. The severity of injury is increasing, possibly due to the increase of violence in society as a whole.

That’s why there’s Newhouse. One of six shelters located throughout the Kansas City metropolitan area, a woman can stay up to ten weeks with a possible two-week extension. While she is there, she is asked to work on improving her situation and to make decisions regarding her future plans and to keep the location of the shelter confidential. Newhouse works for change. Their goal is to break the cycle of violence.
Newhouse became incorporated in 1971 and purchased a neighborhood house to get things rolling. In March of 1999, Newhouse purchased a new building through a community capital campaign, and moved into a renovated dormitory with 92 beds.

Every year, Newhouse directors create new programs and expand existing ones to keep up with the growing number of victims. Their programs and services include case management, residential shelter, outreach counseling, children's services, court advocacy, transitional housing, job readiness, life skills and HAPS - HealthCare Advocacy Promoting Safety.

There is no particular 'type' of battered woman. Any woman, regardless of age, social class, race, education, religion, life style or economic status is a potential victim of domestic abuse. In 2003, Newhouse provided safe haven for 783 women and children. Almost half were women between the ages of 20-49 and 36 percent were children under the age of 9. It is believed that approximately 90 percent of children are aware of the violence directed at their mother.

Newhouse has three fund raising campaigns throughout the year: Women for Women, Breaking The Cycle Biker Ride and its annual House Party. Notice that one of those is a ride. Now it is our turn to help. Come ride in the 4th annual Breaking The Cycle Biker Ride on Sunday, July 18 starting at the Harley-Davidson plant. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. with the first bike out at 9 a.m. for the 100 mile route. Fee is $35 per bike and $5 for an extra poker hand. Post ride activities include music by Blues 88, food and festivities. Come help Newhouse provide a new beginning for abused women and their children.

Volunteering on the event planning committee has been very rewarding and I can’t wait until the big day. You too can become a volunteer and help women in need find a better way. Training is provided. If interested, please call 816-474-6446. Assistance is needed as a shelter staff assistant, children’s advocate, court advocate, shelter maintenance, speakers bureau, administrative office assistant, transportation aide and newsletter assistant.

Please do something today to help a woman in need.

I pray you never need this number, but in case you or a friend do, the 24 hour metrowide crisis hotline number is 816-HOTLINE or 816-468-5463.
Margaret Liggett