MONTGOMERY, AL — A center dedicated to preventing child abuse and assisting victims in southeast Alabama is receiving support in the form of two grants totaling $60,648 awarded by Gov. Robert Bentley.
The Exchange Center for Child Abuse Prevention will use the grants to provide counseling, support groups and other assistance to victims in Barbour, Bullock, Coffee, Covington, Dale, Geneva, Henry, Houston and Pike counties.
“Access to professional assistance is a vital part of helping victims recover from abusive situations,” Bentley said. “The staff and volunteers of the Children’s Center are providing such assistance to help victims rebuild their lives.”
In an effort to prevent abuse, the Exchange Center, formerly the Wise Center, offers anger management classes, parenting classes and a program that provides in-home assistance to parents of younger children. Center staff members also conduct training sessions to help childcare workers identify and report signs of abuse.
The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grant from funds made available by the U.S. Justice Department and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. ADECA administers an array of programs supporting law enforcement and traffic safety, economic development, energy conservation, workforce development, water resource management and recreation development.
Bentley notified Bob Arnold, president of the center’s board, that the grants had been approved. Matching funds of $15,162 are supplementing the awards.
In addition to grant funds, the nonprofit organization depends on private donations to fund staff salaries and cover operating expenses.