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From left to right, Jeremy Swanson, financial director of the Salvation Army of Chautauqua; Senator George Borrello; and Diana Butcher, program director, The Salvation Army Anew Center.

ALBANY – To help domestic violence survivors and victims of crime access services and stay safe, Senator George Borrello, R-Sunset Bay, has partnered with Connecting Communities in Action and the Anew Center in Salvation Army to create the State of Hope program to collect donated cellphones and chargers.

“Unfortunately, we have seen an increase in domestic violence during the pandemic. There is a gap in services for survivors of crime, especially survivors of domestic violence, who need mobile phones to access services and stay in touch with their families and support networks ”, said Borrello. “We created the State of Hope to give survivors of domestic violence and other victims of crime a lifeline as they recover and rebuild their lives. “

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Borrello said State of Hope is being launched now to raise awareness and give the community the opportunity to help survivors of domestic violence and other victims of crime. Donated phones will be refurbished and reset with new SIM cards, thus protecting both phone donor and recipient information. Survivors will also receive prepaid phone cards.

Phones must be 3G or higher and must be deposited with chargers.

Phones and chargers can be donated at Senator Borrello’s offices in Jamestown and Olean at 700 W. State St., Olean, and 2 E. Second St. Suite 302, Jamestown.

From left to right, Senator Borrello, Mason Maynard, Director of the Connecting Communities in Action (CCA) program in Victim Services; Anna Swanson, CCA Domestic Violence Case Manager, and Jennifer McGuire, CCA Under-Served Victim Services Case Manager.

Diana Butcher, program director of the Salvation Army Anew Center in Jamestown, said the center receives around 350 phone calls each month and typically provides emergency shelter to around 125 people, including survivors of domestic violence. , every year.

“This program is important for survivors because often a phone is the key to a survivor having access to resources and assistance,” Mrs. Butcher said. “Often in domestic violence situations, the victim’s phone is taken, broken or tracked. Many victims do not have access to funds to help replace phones or buy minutes. With these phones and minute cards, survivors will be able to contact services, access emergency assistance, and access community resources to help them with financial assistance, basic needs and, above all, help them with emergency aid and security. “I would like to thank Senator Borrello and all of our partners for making this possible! It is a necessary resource.

Mason Maynard, director of the Connecting Communities in Action program in victim services, said State of Hope gives caring community members a chance to come together to help survivors.

“The State of Hope program is a tremendous opportunity for all of us to stand up against those who choose domestic violence as a means of controlling others and harming our community.” he said. “People who donate an old phone play an active role in the safety and well-being of our community. These donated phones are a resource that allows survivors of domestic violence to have a voice and means to connect to our wonderful community and our network of resources.

Borrello said State of Hope is an example of the type of generous and supportive communities in the 57th Senate District.

“When we brought up this idea, we did not hesitate, all the people we contacted wanted to help us” said Borrello. “I would like to thank the Anew Center and Connecting Communities in Action for making this program possible. By working together, we’ve found a way to help survivors stay connected and stay safe. We are fortunate to live in a community where we always take care of each other, always. “

Those who need to access services for survivors of domestic violence or services for victims of crime can call:

Connect Communities in Action at 945-1041. The Connecting Community in Action 24-hour crisis hotline is available at 1-888-945-3970 or 716-945-3970.

Salvation Army Anew Center at 661-3894. The Anew Centre’s 24-hour emergency hotline can be reached at 800-252-8748 or 716-661-3897.

For more information on the State of Hope, call the Borrello District Office in Jamestown at 664-4603 or Senator Borrello’s Satellite Office in Olean at 372-4901.

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