The Indianapolis Foundation, a CICF affiliate, renewed its support of the Emergency Bed Space program to ensure safe shelter is always available for Central Indiana women and children who are fleeing domestic abuse situations and attempting to end cycles of violence in their families.   The $30,000 grant award will be utilized to conduct the Emergency Bed Space program at The Salvation Army’s Social Service Center.

“This grant will allow us to continue conducting this remarkable and collaborative program,” said Dena Simpson, associate director at the Social Service Center, “I can’t wait to see the impact this grant will have in the lives of women and children we serve!”

The Emergency Bed Space program is part of a community wide initiative to provide a more comprehensive and coordinated response to domestic abuse.  Since the program’s inception, the number of victims seeking shelter has continued to grow.  In 2008, the Emergency Bed Space program served 51 singles and 65 families who were fleeing an abusive relationship for a total of 327 nights.

According to Simpson, “The increase in economic downturn we are experiencing in our community is causing stress that exacerbates already abusive relationships.  Economic problems are not the primary reason for staying in an unhealthy relationship, but it can paralyze people from seeking a positive change because staying in even a bad relationship can seem better than moving to the unknown.”

The Emergency Bed Space program is administrated by the Social Service Center, which compiles bed space availability from all Marion County shelters and sends out a daily e-mail update to all who request it.  The Social Service Center also provides access to emergency bed space, case management and transportation when all other shelters are full.  In addition, the SSC continues to monitor available space and ensures that Emergency Bed Space clients are placed in a regular shelter facility as soon as additional space becomes available.