The goal of the Relationships KAN! Project is to empower Kansans to create safe, healthy relationships and help their neighbors impacted by intimate partner violence
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – October 15, 2014 - Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas announced the launch of Relationships KAN!, a project funded through the Kansas Department of Children and Families (DCF). Relationships KAN! is designed to help domestic violence and sexual assault survivors who are recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), as well as non-TANF recipients, in 11 counties of northeast Kansas. Relationships KAN! will serve Anderson, Atchison, Brown, Coffey, Doniphan, Leavenworth, Linn, Marshall, Nemaha, Osage and Pottawatomie counties in an effort to prevent domestic violence and poverty, and promote self-sufficiency among TANF recipients.
“Families challenged by poverty in our rural counties, especially those impacted by domestic violence, are particularly vulnerable and call us to greater service,” said Ken Williams, President and CEO of Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas. “Our agency strives to provide help, hospitality and hope to our brothers and sisters challenged by great need. Relationships KAN! will provide access to help and support so that survivors in the 11 counties can be strengthened and move forward with their lives.”
Some of the services provided include safety planning, healthy relationship education, responsible parenting and financial education. One feature of the Relationships KAN! project is the mobile resource bus, that travels throughout 21 counties of northeast Kansas. “The mobile resource bus brings tangible help to outlying communities that may otherwise be underserved” says Kim Brabits, Vice President of Operations with Catholic Charites of Northeast Kansas. “Our agency is positioned to deliver needed help and fill gaps where services or resources are sparse. Our ability to deliver housing assistance, education on healthy relationships, parenting and budgeting in our rural communities will help survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault build upon existing strengths and acquire necessary help to rebuild their lives for themselves and their families.”
“We are always happy to support programs that further DCF’s mission of protecting children, promoting healthy families and encouraging personal responsibility,” DCF Secretary Phyllis Gilmore said. “It’s wonderful to see support services offered to our clients who are overcoming domestic violence and sexual assault trauma.”
Founded in 1956, Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas is a nonprofit health and human services agency that assists annually more than 85,000 people of all faiths. Catholic Charities serves 21 counties in northeast Kansas with service site locations in Emporia, Lawrence, Leavenworth, Kansas City, Kan., Overland Park, Olathe and Topeka. The goal is to offer help and hope and to move families from a situation of poverty and anxiety to one of self-sufficiency and stability. Catholic Charities provides a wide range of programs including: Family Stabilization, Family Strengthening and Healthcare. Catholic Charities is a United Way Member Agency.
“Healthy relationships are critical for building self-worth, one’s sense of family, one’s sense of safety,” said Christina Sell, Project Director. “Physical safety, emotional safety, commitment safety and community safety are all interconnected, and when relationship safety is compromised, it undermines not only the victim, but the family. Relationships KAN! is about promoting safety, restoring self worth and empowering victims to become survivors. Starting this project in October, which coincides with National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, underscores the fact that domestic violence is not just an urban problem, but a family problem, and it affects rural communities, too.”
For more information about Relationships KAN!, contact Project Director Christina Sell at (913) 384-6608 ext. 2038.