Madera Domestic Violence Shelter to Re-Open

October 22, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
The domestic violence shelter in Madera will open its doors to women and children again Friday. The move comes after the governor signed legislation that will restore its state funding.-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Action Partnership Food, Clothing, and Toiletries Drive
1225 Gill Avenue in Madera County
Thursday, October 29 from 8am-6pm

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A trip to the grocery store is a welcome chore for these women from the Community Action Partnership of Madera County.

They're stocking up on food for the Martha Diaz Shelter, which closed August 7th due to a huge state funding cut.

"It didn't occur to me how difficult it would be until the following week when I had somebody standing at the front of the office with a child with no shoes, a diaper on, and they leave with absolutely nothing. And she wanted to be in a safe place where she couldn't be located and I couldn't provide that for her," said Victim Services Program Manager Tina Figueroa.

Figueroa said the shelter has been forced to turn away 21 women, some of whom went back to their abusers. But now the agency is preparing to re-open these vacant rooms because the governor signed legislation Wednesday restoring more than $16-million dollars for six domestic violence shelters around the state, including this one.

However, it will take some time before that money is available to spend.

"So until then we are going to go ahead and open tomorrow using funds that we got from Chuckchansi, PG&E and Madera Country Club Women's Golf Club," said Figueroa, "The 21 that have been turned away will be contacted and notified that shelter is available."

Victim advocate Norma Alvarez said she can't wait to open the doors Friday morning to the women and children seeking a safe haven and a brighter future. "It's gonna be great that we can actually start providing the services again."

To celebrate the re-opening of the shelter and help keep it stocked, the Action Partnership is planning a food, clothing, and toiletries drive. It will be held here at the Gill Avenue office in Madera County on October 29 from 8am-6pm.



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