Greenhouse 17 named ‘Shelter of the Year’ by national organization

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56/WKYT) – A central Kentucky organization has received a national honor.

Greenhouse 17 was granted the Purple Ribbon Award for “Program/Shelter of the Year.”

The nonprofit helps survivors of intimate partner abuse by providing housing, legal advocacy, and other services.

Executive Director Darlene Thomas said the survivors and staff at Greenhouse 17 are ecstatic about the recognition.

“We had been notified that we had received Purple Ribbon Awards from domesticshelters.org and Theresa’s Fund,” she said. “What they try to do is recognize programs and services throughout the U.S. and Canada who are doing great work. We had been identified for innovation by these experts, as well as for our annual report.”

The national honor comes with a $10,000 grant.

“I think we were really recognized because of the unique way we go about our service delivery,” Thomas said. “It’s a trauma-informed care program, who works really hard to meet people where they are.”

Thomas said the shelter will use the money to pay for services.

“It puts food in the kitchen, on the table, it keeps the lights on, it covers the needs of survivors, for transportation, and special costs they might have,” she said.

Greenhouse 17 can hold up to 42 men, women and children.

Thomas said it’s not about the awards, it’s about celebrating the courage of survivors, and the care of employees.

“For survivors to move from crisis to self sufficiency, it takes an entire community,” she said. “Survivors have to know they’re believed, that they’re going to be supported, they’re not going to be judged.”

This month, Greenhouse 17 is recognizing Domestic Violence Awareness Month. On Oct. 21, everyone is encouraged to dress for Purple Thursday to show their support for survivors.

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