College gathers more than 1,000 donations for local domestic violence organization and shelter for victims

AUGUSTA, GA. – After sorting and counting the mountain of supplies donated to the Chi Sigma Iota donation drive for SafeHomes of Augusta, the tally is in. The Augusta University College of Education raised more than $2,700 worth of supplies to support the mission of the local domestic violence agency and its shelter for victims.

“After loading several carts, we were wiped out but exhilarated – and we could not have fit another item in the truck,” said Dr. Meredith Rausch, professor of counseling, in the Department of Counselor Education, Leadership and Research. Nearly 1,100 items were shoehorned in for the trip to the agency.

Donation drives such as this are “critical,” said SafeHomes Development Director Jennifer Frantom.

“So many times, clients come with just the clothes on their backs. We provide everything,” Frantom said.

In addition to shelter, food and personal care, SafeHomes tries to offer some comforts of home to the children adjusting to their new lives, so holiday gifts are another way to help.

“The transition from home life to shelter life can be difficult for the children, so we want to provide a normal routine during the holidays, which is such a memorable time in children’s lives,” Rausch said.

There is still time to donate. Those interested in helping can donate according to the list of individual needs by age; can adopt a shelter family as part of their holiday gift-giving; or can donate a cash gift to Specs, the 501(c)(3) running the holiday drive. All proceeds go to SafeHomes of Augusta.

SafeHomes says it estimates hosting nine adult women and 14 children during December. The children’s ages are expected to include two 2-year-old girls; three 4-year-old boys; two 5-year-old girls and two 5-year-old boys; one 6-year-old girl; one 8-year-old girl and two 8-year-old boys; and one 13-year-old boy. However, the population of the shelter changes regularly, and it is difficult for the organization to predict its holiday residency.

Personal items needed for the shelter include:

  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Deodorant
  • Toothbrushes
  • Toothpaste
  • Lotion
  • Soap
  • Diapers
  • Feminine Hygiene Products
  • Paper Towels
  • Kleenex
  • Toilet Paper
  • Journals
  • Pens

For more information on the donation drive, call 706-737-1437. For more information on SPECS, visithttp://www.specspartners.org. For more information on SafeHomes of Augusta, visithttp://www.safehomesdv.org.

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