WILKES-BARRE, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — On Wednesday, State Representative Matt Cartwright announced that $550,000 in federal funding will be donated to Wilkes-Barre’s Domestic Violence Service Center for area victims, from the Department of Justice (D.O.J.).

Representative Cartwright says the funding will be donated to help with transitional housing assistance for local victims of domestic violence and their children.

“No one should feel like they have to stay in an abusive or dangerous situation to keep a roof over their head. The Domestic Violence Service Center is doing essential work to help victims and their children move forward with their lives with a roof over their heads. I am grateful for their efforts, and I am proud to support this lifesaving funding in Congress,” Representative Cartwright explained.

According to a press release, since 1976, the Domestic Violence Service Center offers free and confidential services for victims of domestic abuse and their kids. Services include a 24-hour hotline, crisis intervention, and supportive counseling.

The Center also offers court advocacy, community outreach, life, and parenting skills training, and workshops to help empower survivors in Luzerne and Carbon counties.

“Domestic Violence Service Center is appreciative of this funding, as requests for housing assistance and stability have exploded and lengths of stays expanded due to lack of safe available housing resources. The pandemic exacerbated an already insidious problem in our communities and funding will allow the continuation of housing and support services for domestic violence victims and their children,” said Paula M. Triano, Executive Director of the Domestic Violence Service Center.

The D.O.J.’s Office of Violence Against Women administers transitional housing assistance grants, as well as, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking programs, which provides funding to organizations that offer survivors a minimum of six months of housing support, including support and follow-up services.

The Office of Violence Against Women is granting 72 awards totaling $35.6M for the 2022 fiscal year.