In an effort to better reach victims of domestic abuse in the South Hall area, Gateway Domestic Violence Center will open an outreach office in Flowery Branch.
Executive Director Jessica Butler said the office will open March 1 and offer services in English and Spanish.
“We began to realize that we were actually serving mostly the city of Gainesville and some North Hall, but very, very little from the populations in Oakwood, Flowery Branch and Braselton,” Butler said.
Some needing services would travel out of South Hall to Gainesville, but Butler worried that more often the problem was people not contacting the agency at all.
The exact location is not being disclosed as a safety precaution for potential survivors of domestic abuse.
Butler said the center received federal funding that comes from criminal offenders’ fines and fees that are later allocated to victims’ services providers.
The goal for the office is to “provide an advocate there who meets with people who live in the community, who want help with counseling, safety planning (and) helping them to find resources that they need,” Butler said.
Butler said the office would likely schedule appointments about two days a week until the client base grows, when the agency will possibly look at more staffing.
Gateway’s hotline staff, which can be reached at 770-536-5860, will schedule the appointments.