CAPSA receives $750,000 grant from U.S. Department of Justice

Citizens Against Physical and Sexual Abuse, in conjunction with Fast Forward Charter High School and the Cache Youth Resource Center, has received a $750,000 grant from the United States Justice Department.

The grant came from the Office of Violence Against Women, and its goal is to train youth, particularly boys and men, to become leaders in the community, and be engaged in violence prevention.

To that end, CAPSA has hired a full-time clinical therapist whose office will be located in Fast Forward, and whose time will be devoted to the teens there.

This new therapist, Alicia Stettler, said she’s excited to begin working with the youth.

“I love that CAPSA looks at everything so holistically,” Stettler said. “They look at the children, the adults and the youth, to see how they interact with each other. I’m very excited to get to know the students and help all of their interactions improve.”

CAPSA also hired a full-time prevention educator, Bethany Balady, whose role will be to teach those attending Fast Forward about healthy relationships, personal boundaries, consent, how to prevent bullying and other strategies to assist youth in dealing with their emotions and challenges.

Fast Forward will also be adding staff to support the engagement of students within violence prevention, and to support families who are currently struggling with abuse.

Jill Lowe, the Principle of Fast Forward, said she’s excited to have these professionals and the resources they bring within the school.

“Many of our students do not have access to the resources they need to be successful,” Lowe said. “With the help of this grant, we will be bringing the resources to them and their families.”

Fast Forward’s mission is to serve students who are at-risk of not completing degree requirements and challenge them in healthy ways. Lowe believes the training students will receive will challenge them in positive, non-academic ways.

“These students are remarkable,” Lowe said. “However, similar to any other school in our valley, many have experienced trauma. If these students can gain social skills which help them interact with others and express themselves in healthy ways, as well as learning healthy coping mechanisms, that will drastically improve their lives right now and in the future.”

Jill Anderson, executive director of CAPSA, is looking forward to partnering with Fast Forward, and she’s very grateful to the Department of Justice for their support with this grant.

“We were one of only fifteen organizations to receive this grant,” Anderson said. “Other recipients were based in New York City, Cleveland and Seattle. I’m grateful the Office of Violence Against Women saw that our need in Logan, Utah is of equal importance to that of these bigger cities. Regardless of population size, we all want to do the same thing, and that’s to change and save the lives of our youth.”

CAPSA has previously received grants from the Department of Justice, and in Fiscal Year 2017, grants equated to 70% of CAPSA’s overall funding.

“We can’t do what we do without the support of the community,” Anderson said. “But we also can’t do what we do without the support of larger, national organizations who have dedicated their time and money to helping end abuse and violence.”

Learn more about CAPSA at capsa.org. Learn more about Fast Forward Charter High School at ffchs.org.

Contacts: Katie Stringham, Development Support Coordinator, Katie@capsa.org, 435-753-2500

Jill Anderson, CAPSA Executive Director, Jill@capsa.org, 435-753-2500

Jill Lowe, Fast Forward Principle, Jill@ffchs.org, 435-713-4255

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CAPSA urges community members to donate locally

Citizens Against Physical and Sexual Abuse has created a campaign designed to help local CPA’s and accountants encourage community members to donate to local non-profits.

Similar to Lee’s branded Buy Local campaign, this campaign encourages residents to keep their charitable giving within Cache Valley.

Matt Whitaker, executive director of the Cache Community Food Pantry, said the Give Local campaign will assist the Food Pantry in many ways.

“Although we receive many food donations throughout the year, we still need financial support to pay for foods that are not commonly donated, overhead, etc.,” Whitaker said.  “The Give Local campaign will go a long way in filling that need.”

Whitaker also expressed appreciation for CAPSA and its efforts to benefit the community at large. Speaking of CAPSA’s development director, James Boyd, Whitaker said, “The efforts by James Boyd to initiate the Give Local campaign is a perfect demonstration of the quality organization that CAPSA is. They are interested in lifting the entire community, not solely those who rely on the services that CAPSA provides.”

Since beginning the campaign in October, Boyd, Whitaker and other non-profit participants have reached out to local financial advisors and met with them regarding the Give Local program.

Troy Martin of Cook Martin Poulson, PC said he’s “All in” when it comes to the Give Local initiative.

“Everyone wants to go travel to South America and work in orphanages or build grass huts, but you don’t have to leave Cache Valley to help someone,” Martin said.

Sammie Macfarlane, executive director of Common Ground Outdoor Adventures, said it’s the willingness of people to give within the community that makes it so special.

“Common Ground Outdoor Adventures is thrilled to be a part of the Give Local Campaign! Seeing individuals invest right here in their own community, to assist those in need, is at the core of what makes Cache Valley such a great place to live.”

As executive director of CAPSA for more than twenty years, Jill Anderson has seen first-hand how generous community members are.

“While we sometimes see the worst of what’s happening in our community, we also get the honor of seeing the best of our community in the support they give to us every year,” Anderson said.

That support enabled CAPSA to become the first and only zero-turn-away shelter in Utah. This means if anyone experiencing domestic violence or sexual abuse comes to CAPSA needing therapy services, shelter or any form of assistance, they will receive it.

“I can only imagine the courage it takes to leave an abusive situation,” Anderson said. “CAPSA is making sure that courage is not in vain. We are here to be a safe place for everyone.”

Boyd said he created the Give Local campaign because he knew what a difference every non-profit makes.

“The Cache Education Foundation is bringing technology into the classroom,” Boyd said. “Stokes Nature Center is providing outdoor learning opportunities to children, and Four Paws Rescue is finding homes for pets who have been deemed by someone else as too old or too much work to care for. I wanted to highlight these great things and show individuals they could make a drastic difference in someone’s life by giving locally.”

Learn more about this program by visiting capsa.org/GiveLocal.

Contact:

Katie Stringham, CAPSA Development Support Coordinator, katie@capsa.org, 435-753-2500.

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CAPSA expands into Rich County

Citizens Against Physical and Sexual Abuse is recognized by state and federal authorities as the domestic violence, sexual assault and rape recovery center for Rich County. However, due to limited resources, prior to 2017, this meant citizens of Rich County had to travel to Logan for services.

The distance between Rich County and CAPSA’s emergency shelter is greater than 70 miles, and it takes more than an hour and a half to drive to.

Knowing this, CAPSA Executive Director, Jill Anderson decided to expand services to Rich County.

“It takes a tremendous amount of courage to leave an abusive relationship,” Anderson said. “I don’t want people hesitating to leave because shelter is too far away.”

CAPSA began its expansion into the county by educating middle and high school students on healthy relationships and how to prevent bullying.

“Education plays a huge role in ending abuse,” CAPSA’s Prevention Education Coordinator, Shellie Lusk said. “Many teenagers don’t know how to react to violence because no one’s ever taught them what to do when they see it or who to talk to.”

In addition to educating students, CAPSA has assigned a full-time caseworker, Allie Leezer, to Rich County.

To date, Leezer has assisted two individuals with protective orders and finding safe housing. She hopes to assist more residents as they become increasingly familiar with CAPSA and its mission.

“Sometimes it’s scary when you have to contact a caseworker,” Leezer said. “No one ever wants to make that phone call, but I hope the community can begin to see how we are aiding families in need, and we’re helping people live lives free of abuse and fear.”

If you or a loved one has experienced domestic abuse or sexual assault, call CAPSA at (435) 753-2500. If you are in immediate danger, call 911.

CAPSA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit dedicated to ending abuse. It provides free confidential therapy and shelter services to those in need, and it has a 24-hour hotline where individuals experiencing domestic violence or sexual assault can call to receive services.

Contacts:

Katie Stringham, Development Support Coordinator, katie@capsa.org, 435-753-2500

Allie Leezer, Rural/Rich Caseworker, allie@capsa.org, 435-753-2500

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