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Vigil to focus on domestic abuse

D/SAOC faces financial hurdles

October 12, 2012
By PETER KASPARI, , Messenger News

Funding issues that will force several Iowa domestic violence shelters to close will impact the Fort Dodge site.

Although the Domestic/Sexual Assault Outreach Center will be affected, Executive Director Connie Harris said she doesn't yet know what will change.

Harris said Thursday that D/SAOC is already making plans for the next year when funding is expected to be reduced.

"We'll be moving into a new region," Harris said. "We'll have three programs, and we're going to be writing a grant in January to keep the shelter in our region."

One change will see D/SAOC expand to cover 20 counties.

Harris said if the shelter remains in Fort Dodge, it will go through significant changes. The biggest of these will be the elimination of outreach programs, which would mean D/SAOC would only act as a shelter.

"Nothing is going to be changing until at least July 1," Harris said. "There will be changes seen, but hopefully not the shelter."

While the future of the local shelter isn't known for sure, Harris said members of the community can help.

"They can help us out by donating to us," she said. "That support will keep our shelter and our program viable when we get ready to write our grant."

The main reason the changes are being made is financial, Harris said.

"This is all about money," she said. "Financial assistance is the biggest way we can be helped. We're just hoping for the best."



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