The six-bedroom traditional looking house on the sleepy street in Georgetown belies its importance to the clients its serves. It belongs to Elizabeth’s Village, a shelter for women and children.
The center’s name is a biblical reference. When Mary was pregnant with her son Jesus, she went to visit her cousin Elizabeth who was also carrying a child at that time. The two ladies took comfort in each other’s company while they anticipated the birth of their children.
Elizabeth’s Village is a community for women and children who require transitional housing and support services. The nonprofit center maintains four programs that help support the at-risk women’s community.
The first initiative is the six-bedroom house; a place where women can come and receive assistance during their journey to self-sufficiency. Residents stay in the home an average of nine months and during that time, are offered classes in time management, financial literacy and more.
The second focus is on the children of the clients living in the house and they also receive class instruction on stress management, personal hygiene and one-on-one tutoring for their school work.
The third area of concentration is preventing homelessness. The outreach coordinator works with women and children who are at an imminent risk of becoming homeless. The center will connect them to resources in the community that can help keep them in their home.
The fourth area of concern for Elizabeth’s Village is domestic violence, which they fight through their Seeking Solace Program. The center works with the Georgetown Police Department to provide a suitcase full of toiletries, blankets, books and a resource guide. The guide provides information on different agencies that can be of use to them when trying to leave an abusive partner.
The nonprofit is grateful for the support the center receives from the community, according to Executive Director Kandice Whitehouse.
“The First Christian Church owns the house we use for the transitional program and they allow us to rent that house for $1 a year. It makes such a difference to have that kind of support,” said Whitehouse.
The center operates on donations, grants and their own fundraising efforts.
“Our big annual winter fundraiser is moving to Lexington because we ran out of room at our location here in Georgetown last year,’” said Whitehouse. The sixth Annual Dinner & Theater fundraiser will be held on Saturday, Feb. 1. The event includes live music, dinner and a play performed by students from Georgetown College.
Last year, the event raised $31,000 for the center.
The money is well spent year round, but for Christmas each year the center presents baskets of useful items to its past graduates as a way of reminding them that there are people who still care about them, even if they are no longer in need of the services.
“We are taking donations for the adopt-a-family effort so people can provide a gift basket to graduates of our program,” said Whitehouse.
The center is happy to receive donations of any kind, however tutors are always needed for the children in the center and a complete wish-list of products and clothing can be viewed on their website at http://www.elizabethsvillage.org. Tickets for the fundraiser are $80 and will go on sale Jan. 1, 2020, or you can call for more info at 502-863-8000.
Jackie Anders can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.