HAVEN breaks ground on $8mil state-of-the-art facility in Pontiac

HAVEN, Oakland County’s only comprehensive center for the treatment and prevention of domestic and sexual violence, is taking a new stance against violence, one that will help people more effectively and efficiently. The nonprofit launched the public phase of its Plant the Seeds of Hope Capital Campaign for a new facility – slated to continue over the next 12 months – on June 18 during a private groundbreaking ceremony.
“This is a landmark moment in HAVEN’s long history,” said Beth Morrison, president and CEO, HAVEN. “Each day we help families in our own backyard find safety – a fundamental human need, as great as food or shelter. Your financial support will provide women and their children, who bravely take the first step in securing their safety, change their lives forever.”
For the $8 million initiative, HAVEN is currently seeking $3 million to be funded through new market tax credits and other incentive programs, leaving a $5 million fundraising goal. The funding will support the construction of a new HAVEN facility that will provide 36,000 square feet of residential, counseling, and advocacy space. The building will be located on approximately six acres of land, purchased in November of 2012, strategically located near the Oakland County campus in Pontiac.  

“I am proud to be part of building a new HAVEN,” said Sarah L. McClelland, campaign co-chair and chief control officer, Chase Commercial Bank. “The building will stand as a visible sign of the pervasive issues of domestic and sexual violence in our communities.”
HAVEN has reached 80 percent of the $5 million fundraising goal during the campaign’s “quiet phase,” which is a testament to the organization’s impact in Oakland County and beyond. This phase included outreach to the organization’s board of directors, major individual donors, and corporate and foundation partners. HAVEN now turns to the community at large to help fund the remaining dollar amount to reach the campaign goal.
“With the same spirit of the volunteers that began HAVEN nearly 40 years ago, we are optimistically asking our friends and neighbors, who share our vision that everyone deserves to live without fear, to invest in HAVEN’s future,” Morrison continued.

The process for victims seeking shelter, personal protection orders, copies of legal documents and restraining orders can be demanding and degrading. By housing services under one roof, HAVEN can make it easier and more comfortable for survivors to get help; thereby, reducing their risk of becoming frustrated by the process and potentially returning to their abusers.

“The current average length of stay in HAVEN’s Residential Program is 35 days – we expect that number to be reduced,” added Morrison. “By housing more services on site we will be able to streamline the steps our clients have to take towards safe and independent living.” 

This new HAVEN will be based on a model – the Family Justice Center – it will be a new, more effective way to work that will help expand HAVEN capabilities to provide victims with the help they need. Pioneered in San Diego in 2002, the Family Justice Center model provides a central location for the services victims need. It has been adopted by communities in 33 states and 3 countries, and has proven to:

·         Reduce homicides
·         Increase victim safety, autonomy, and empowerment
·         Reduce fear and anxiety for victims and their children
·         Reduce recantation and minimization by victims ?
“By bringing HAVEN out of hiding, we will shine a bright light on the responsibility we all have in ending violence against women,” said Brad Simmons, campaign co-chair and director, office of the executive chairman, Ford Motor Company.
Stucky Vitale Architects of Royal Oak designed HAVEN’s facility under the direction of Principal architect, John Vitale. Frank Rewold and Son Inc. of Rochester will be managing the facility construction.

To make a donation or learn more about HAVEN’s Capital Campaign visit www.haven-oakland.org or contact Rachel Decker at 248-322-3703 or rdecker@haven-oakland.org.Click here to view the campaign video.
HAVEN is Oakland County’s center for the prevention and treatment of domestic violence and sexual assault. As a nationally recognized nonprofit leader, HAVEN empowers survivors and provides education to promote a world of safe, equal and accountable communities where sexual assault and domestic violence do not exist. For more information about HAVEN and its programs and services visit www.haven-oakland.org or call 248-334-1284. For help, call 877-922-1274.