Helping Those in Need in Carson City - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Helping Those in Need in Carson City

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It all began 34 years ago. A small shelter, opened by 2 formerly battered women, who knew there were others in pain in Carson City. They are women who are desperate to get away, trying to protect themselves from abuse. Director Lisa Lee told us they come in all ages: "You know, our clients run from 18-year-olds to 86."

And there are the children, coming to Advocates with just the clothes on their backs. Most are upset, coming from nightmare scenes at home. Lisa says, "Our average client is going to be 36-years-old with 2 children under the age of 6."

Sadly, there is never a time when their shelter is empty…there's never a time when domestic violence stops. The quest to help others has grown from a small 2-bedroom apartment to a full service 51-bed shelter…it's now the largest shelter for victims of domestic violence in northern Nevada. Abused wives and moms come for help, often in the middle of the night, and often with nothing. Lisa told us the typical client "is not going to have transportation. She's not receiving social services and she's not going to be employed when she walks in the door."

It wouldn't work without the food pantry. While wives and moms are restarting their lives there, the one thing they can't cut back on is food for their kids. That comes from you, at our "Share Your Christmas" food drive this Friday from 6am to 6pm. The food collected at the Governor's Mansion location will go to them. Lee calls it "Our primary food drive. This is what will get us into Spring, so this is crucial for us. We'll stock our pantry shelves."

At a time when the folks coming for help are at their lowest, your donation means more than food…they need to know people do care. They're looking for kindness, after going through some of the saddest situations. It's scary to think where this sanctuary for abused women would be without the food drive. Without this place, and the food, many families would be on the street.

There are many stories that back that up. Lisa just heard from an ex-client, whose family stayed there during Christmas, 2 years ago: "They moved into a very small home and it was just a real struggle. She said she finished the nursing program and is making a very good salary, and she said it was the best Christmas she ever had though, was what we were able to help her with."

2 other Carson area charities depend on your food donations: FISH, which stands for "Friends in Service Helping", serves the homeless and hungry in Carson City. The Ron Wood Family Resource Center helps at-risk families with education, parenting classes and after school programs.

-written by John Potter

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