WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — One area non-profit committed to promoting safe and healthy communities through outreach is hoping to expand its services and now with a big push from Impact 100, they’ll be able to do so.
First Step Inc received $81,000 after being awarded the Impact 100’s ‘Big Give’ grant.
Executive Director Michelle Turnbow said this will be fueled into a program that focuses on offender accountability.
“We’re gonna start a batters intervention program where when you are first arrested for family violence you’ll be court-ordered to take these classes,” Turnbow said.
Turnbow said this is a project one year in the making and believes that the community could greatly benefit from the B.I.P program based on statistics.
“Speaking to Chief Borrego, they do a hundred calls a week in domestic and family violence,” Turnbow said.
Turnbow said she is grateful for the big assist in making this program a reality.
“These classes are meant … [and] to help give them the tools that they need to make better choices in the future,” Turnbow said.
Impact 100 is an organization of women working together to transform lives in the community and president Paula Perkins said one way they do this is through high-impact grants.
“It’s high-impact because we are asking to really be able to tackle their missions in new and creative ways deepening their services or expanding their services,” Perkins said. “We want to give organizations the opportunity to tackle big projects and be able to produce that transformational change within the community, a lot of these issues are surrounding systemic issues and that requires larger pools of funding.”
Turnbow said when surveyed in other areas, results show 67% of those who utilize this program did not re-offend and both she and Perkins hope the same success rate or better for all 12 counties first step serves.
Turnbow said without her team this wouldn’t have been possible and wants them to know she appreciates their dedication.
First Step still needs community support to sustain its other programs that focus on the individuals affected by domestic violence, find out how you can help here and tune in to next Wednesday’s edition of Helping the Helpers for a deeper look at the organization’s needs.