CFWT recently awarded a Community Grant to Women’s Protective Services (WPS). WPS provides a safe environment, offers community education, prevention, rehabilitation of violent family members, encourages transition to self-sufficiency, and advocates for the prevention and elimination of family violence. The staff at WPS is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to advocate for women, men and children who have experienced domestic violence. As part of that safe environment, they provide cottages for those fleeing from abuse to have a safe space to heal and transition to self-sufficiency.
The grant awarded by the Foundation was to weatherproof the cottages, something that had not been done since they were first built nearly twenty years ago.
On September 22, 2018, a 30-year-old woman (who we will call Abigail) called the WPS hotline number requesting immediate service. Abigail was caught in an abusive relationship. After two years, she finally gathered the courage to reach for help after her boyfriend pushed her down the stairs because she forgot to start the dishwasher. Abigail had no car, was not allowed to work, and had no friends or family in the Lubbock area. She found the number online and called Women’s Protective Services who immediately sent someone to her rescue.
When Abigail arrived at the shelter, all she had was stuffed in three Walmart sacks. Her arms were covered in old and new bruises. She was nervous and frightened. With nowhere else to go, Abigail moved onto the WPS grounds and began healing.
As WPS requires, she attended counseling classes. The staff at WPS helped her secure a restraining order. As she reclaimed her life, she found a job, saved her money and found a place to live. February 1, 2019, Abigail moved into her one-bedroom apartment, paid her deposit and her first month’s rent. She is still attending counseling and doing remarkably well. Abigail says that WPS saved her life. We believe it is true.
New paint might not sound significant, but WPS considers a comfortably safe environment imperative to healing and growth. It is the hope of WPS, that by maintaining their facilities, women will continue coming and staying long enough to recover from the suffering.
Stories like this drive the Community Foundation of West Texas and our passionate involvement in this area. The Community Foundation has a rich and meaningful 25+ year history with Women's Protective Services. We are humbled by the work they do for the battered and abused. We are proud to be a part of it.