AWAIC shelter adds new beds with completed expansion

The AWAIC shelter has completed an expansion
The AWAIC shelter has completed an expansion(ktuu)
Published: Feb. 25, 2021 at 4:52 PM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - The Abused Women’s Aid In Crisis shelter for victims of domestic violence in Anchorage has added over a dozen new beds now that a $4.6 million project has been completed.

Director Suzi Pearson said the shelter has been completely renovated and the building now includes a 7,000-square-foot expansion that houses its administrative side.

Pearson said the shelter also has room for a new type of client: men, who in the past were housed off-site in hotels.

“When you are at a hotel it is really challenging to get meals and get the level of case management and transportation and support that you really need,” she said. “It was difficult to deliver that service, but very difficult for a victim to access those services. With them being on-site they are going to be able to access all of those services with ease.”

Pearson said she felt confident men and women could safely share shelter space, adding that in the past, some men have arrived with children, which the shelter also has room for.

In addition to new space for clients, there is also more room for staff, including brand new offices they no longer have to share.

“It was the perfect timing with COVID and social distancing,” Pearson said. “So now all of them have their safe space to meet with clients and not have to worry about social distancing because they are sharing office space.”

But Pearson said the coronavirus pandemic has brought some changes to the secure shelter. They are no longer accepting donations at the door.

Items the shelter needs can be found on their website where people can make an appointment to drop them off. There’s also an Amazon Wish List that people can use to donate.

Pearson said the expansion will allow them to better serve people who are experiencing domestic violence.

If you are facing threatened or actual domestic violence, please discreetly call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 or Abused Women’s Aid in Crisis in Anchorage at 907-272-0100.

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