|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 16, 2012
CONTACT: Kristine Brown
New Jersey Department of Children and Families Commissioner Visits Dottie’s House –
A Haven For Survivors of Domestic Violence
TRENTON, NJ – New Jersey Department of Children and Families (DCF) Commissioner Allison Blake traveled to Brick, NJ today to tour Dottie’s House, a transitional housing facility designed to aid women and children who have survived domestic violence.
Commissioner Blake met with Carole Wolfe, founder and executive director of Dottie’s House, and toured the center which has been in existence since 1999.
“Dottie’s House is a remarkable example of a program making a real difference in the lives of the families it serves,” Commissioner Blake said. “Mrs. Wolfe and her team have created a warm and safe environment for female victims of domestic violence, as well as their children, which offers intensive programs and services aimed at guiding these families to self-sufficiency.”
The facility features 17 one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments equipped with a kitchen, bathroom, living room, and washer/dryer which allows for each family to have their own private residence that is safe and secure. In addition, Dottie’s House offers private counseling rooms, a computer room, an art therapy room, a community room, an enclosed playground and a courtyard for the women and children to enjoy.
Mrs. Wolfe explained to Commissioner Blake how weekly case management sessions with their clients focus on achievable goals that are tailored to each woman’s past achievements and strengths. In addition, information on topics such as safety planning and guidance to prevent future incidents of domestic violence, budgeting and financial literacy, job readiness training, stress and time management, life skills and health and nutrition counseling and art therapy sessions for children are offered.
“Upon completion of the Dottie’s House program, our families have gained the knowledge and skills they need to live an emotionally healthy life free from violence,” Mrs. Wolfe said.
Commissioner Blake acknowledged these efforts by adding, “The work being undertaken at Dottie’s House is instrumental not only for the current safety and security of the women and children it serves, but it is also helping to prevent the effects of abuse on future generations, and that is absolutely imperative as we work together to break the cycle of domestic violence.”
DCF’s Office of Domestic Violence and Family Support Services is the primary oversight agency for domestic violence programs in the state of New Jersey. The emphasis of the office is to provide culturally-competent, strength-based, family-friendly services in a manner that is universally accessible and non-stigmatizing to women in need of this assistance.
On July 1, 2012, the New Jersey Division on Women was transferred from the Department of Community Affairs to DCF, making DCF the state’s primary agency responsible for domestic and sexual violence programs, as well as other women’s services.
Commissioner Blake said, “Bringing the Division on Women to DCF better positions us to strengthen families and sharpen our focus on the co-occurrence of domestic violence and child abuse. This will be a tremendous benefit to women, children and families throughout New Jersey.”
For more information on DCF, the Division on Women or domestic and sexual violence programs, visit www.nj.gov/dcf.
For more information on Dottie’s House visit www.dottieshouse.org
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