OMAHA, Neb. – Heartland Family Service (HFS) is pleased to announce it was recently awarded a $90,000 one-year grant from United Way of the Midlands. Thanks to the generosity of United Way’s Community Investment Grant, individuals and families who participate in the HFS Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault program will receive the therapeutic services and shelter services they need to feel safe in their own homes.

The Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault program helps keeps survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault safe, holds offenders accountable, and prevent violence from occurring and/or
re-occurring. The program strives to achieve these goals by providing emergency services to victims and survivors, which include a 24-hour crisis line (1-800-523-3666), crisis counseling, advocacy, therapy, support services, and the Safe Haven concealed emergency shelter to protect women, men, and children escaping violence.

With the help of this grant, the Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault program will continue to help individuals, children, and families who experience violence to recover from the trauma they have experienced and begin the path to healing. In 2019, this program served nearly 1,500 clients. 100% of clients who exited the program successfully established a residence that was healthy, safe, and away from their abusers.

In late 2019, an HFS leadership team member received a call from local law enforcement informing him of a critical domestic violence situation involving a mother and her children. The abuser had owned and fired a deadly weapon while in the presence of his wife and their children. The man was later arrested on a number of charges and was sentenced to prison for a considerable amount of time. Nevertheless, because of this individual’s robust network throughout our community, it was dangerous and difficult for this mother and her children to find a safe place to live. After the incident, the mother called the 24-hour crisis line, which brought her and children to the Safe Haven concealed emergency shelter. This family was later able to establish a healthy, safe residence of their own.

About United Way of the Midlands

United Way of the Midlands (UWM) has served the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro area for more than 95 years. Guided by best practices and community input, it approaches poverty in a specific way – a “united” way. With the support of volunteers, community partners, and donors, UWM invests donor dollars efficiently and effectively in our local community. These dollars fund basic needs, education, and financial stability programs at local nonprofits, creating a circle of support for people in need. Please visit unitedwaymidlands.org for more information.

About Heartland Family Service

Since 1875, Heartland Family Service has responded to the needs of our area’s most vulnerable children and families. In 2019, our agency connected with over 60,000 individuals through direct services, education, and outreach. Our programs serve individuals of all ages — from infants in our Family Works program to seniors in our Generations Community Center. We operate from over 15 locations in east central Nebraska and southwest Iowa. We provide critical human services to the individuals and families who ultimately shape the future of our community through the following program areas: Child & Family Well-Being, Counseling & Prevention, and Housing, Safety, & Financial Stability.