Campus supports Laurel House Project

By Danielle Feole
October 25, 2007

A class project at Cabrini College is leading to various forms of involvement with Laurel House. Laurel House is the only domestic violence shelter and service in Montgomery County.

Cabrini students are collecting old or unused cell phones and empty ink cartridges for Laurel House. Students should contact relatives and friends to gain more support about this drive.?

Cell phones and cartridges can be put in a drop-box in the admissions office, business office, registrars office and faculty support.?

The shelter was founded by the Women’s Center of Montgomery County in 1980. In 1981, Laurel House was incorporated as an independent nonprofit organization.

Laurel House’s mission statement is to provide a safe haven for abused women and their children, to raise public awareness about domestic violence and to advocate for social change against domestic violence.

Students can attend a day of awareness session, provide Monday night activities for children, become a holiday volunteer, volunteer at Marian’s Attic, Laurel House’s thrift shop, or assist with in-kind donations.

On Sunday, Oct. 28th, Laurel House will be holding a 5K run and walk against domestic violence. Registration information can be found in the Wolfington Center, which is located on the third floor of Founders Hall.

Lauren Mindermann, coordinator of volunteer services at Cabrini College, said, “Laurel House is very excited to have volunteers from Cabrini.”

According to Tommie Wilkins, director of volunteer services and community education at Laurel House, it would like male volunteers as well as women. The children there need to witness men whom they need not be afraid of. There are male victims too.?

Amy DeBlasis, an English instructor, participates with Laurel House in her Seminar 300 course.?

Amy DeBlasis said in an e-mail, “Students in my Sem 300 are completing a domestic violence advocacy program that will certify them to work in any shelter in Pennsylvania.”

According to Wilkins, in co-facilitating a class with Amy DeBlasis, they are putting domestic violence training into a classroom.?

When students finish the course they can choose to volunteer individually. Students will be able to work with the police, a medical advocacy program and local hospitals when victims present themselves. Students in DeBlasis’ course are surveying students’ views on campus and the community about relationship violence. Wilkins said, “Students are a pool of information and knowledge that we can use to further educate people on campus and in general.”Any student who knows someone affected by domestic violence can call Laurel House’s hotline at 1-800-642-3150.

Danielle Feole

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