PORTLAND, Maine: As Domestic Violence Awareness Month ends, U.S. Attorney Darcie N. McElwee announced today that Caring Unlimited, York County’s domestic violence resource center, was recently awarded a $497,000 three-year grant from the Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) Consolidated Youth Program. Caring Unlimited’s program was one of only 16 projects selected nationally to receive such a grant.
The “Safe Communities for Youth” project will expand youth-focused prevention and intervention efforts in York County by conducting a community needs assessment, followed by the creation and implementation of a strategic plan designed to reduce victimization and perpetration of youth dating violence and sexual assaults. Partner agencies on the grant are Sexual Assault Response Services of Southern Maine, Maine Boys to Men and Saltwater Vineyard Church.
“We are thrilled to be a recipient of this highly competitive program. We look forward to partnering with our community to create much needed capacity for youth violence prevention programming,” said Caring Unlimited Executive Director Susan Giambalvo. “The project will take a holistic approach to creating healthy communities for youth by creating leadership opportunities for youth and engaging supportive adults to prevent and respond to youth dating violence and sexual assault. As a community, we all have a responsibility and a role to play in changing the conditions that allow domestic violence to persist.”
“Maine continues to experience a significant problem with incidents of domestic violence,” said U.S. Attorney McElwee. “We are proud of Caring Unlimited’s achievement and look forward to the work ahead as domestic violence prevention will be a priority for my office.”
Since 1977, Caring Unlimited has worked to end domestic violence in York County through service to an average of 2000 individuals annually. They offer a comprehensive array of programs including 24-hour Helpline, emergency shelter, transitional housing, individual and group advocacy and support, and legal assistance. The agency relies on volunteers to ensure that support and safety planning services are available to anyone affected by domestic abuse. More information is available by visiting www.caring-unlimited.org or by calling the Helpline at 1-800-239-7298.
OVW provides leadership in developing the nation’s capacity to reduce violence through the implementation of the Violence Against Women Act and subsequent legislation. Created in 1995, OVW administers financial and technical assistance to communities across the country that are developing programs, policies and practices aimed at ending domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking. In addition to overseeing federal grant programs, OVW undertakes initiatives in response to special needs identified by communities facing acute challenges. Learn more at www.justice.gov/ovw.