A lifeline

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To paraphrase Mark Twain, the reports of our death are highly exaggerated. There has been a rumor circulating in the community that the Retreat is closing its doors. Not true. We have, on the contrary, listed our administrative office building, located on Goodfriend Drive, for sale so as to expand our financial options during these difficult economic times. The shelter is not for sale, and its operation and the daily functions of our staff, will not be affected.

We remain totally dedicated and committed to the mission we serve: providing safety, shelter and support for victims of domestic abuse, and breaking the cycle of family violence. In addition, we are currently interviewing applicants for the position of executive director, and look forward to this person taking the Retreat to even higher levels of service and excellence for the clients we serve.

We need your help, and that of your readers. The statistics tell an alarming story: Globally at least one in three women has been beaten, coerced into sex, or otherwise abused during her lifetime; studies suggest that between 3.3 million and 10 million children witness some form of domestic violence annually; between September and December 2008, the Retreat’s shelter occupancy surged upward by 26 percent to full capacity. Recently the Retreat’s counseling, hotline and advocacy services increased by an estimated 36 percent. Through your donations and continuing support, the Retreat has been, and will continue to be, the place “where violence ends and hope begins.”

RICHARD DEMATOPresident, The Retreat Board of Directors

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