SafeHouse celebrates 25 years

SafeHouse of Shelby County marked its 25th year of service to the commuity with the "Home Sweet Home" online auction from Aug. 27 to Sept. 1. (Contributed)

SafeHouse of Shelby County marked its 25th year of service to the commuity with the “Home Sweet Home” online auction from Aug. 27 to Sept. 1. (Contributed)

By MOLLY DAVIDSON / Staff Writer

PELHAM—On Sept. 1, SafeHouse of Shelby County marked 25 years of providing shelter, services and assistance to victims of sexual and domestic violence.

“We’re just excited to hit such a significant milestone,” SafeHouse Executive Director Erin Bodden said. “(SafeHouse) started as an all volunteer effort in a residential home donated to the organization… We’ve come a long way”

Originally offering only “limited term emergency shelter,” SafeHouse has grown into an “extensive program,” including a 56-bed shelter, emergency and transitional housing, community and prevention education programs, counseling and case management, Bodden explained.

SafeHouse opened its 25th year with the “Home Sweet Home” online auction fundraiser from Aug. 27 through Sept. 1. The first fundraiser of its kind for the organization, the online auction centered on the idea that “everyone should have a safe place to live,” Bodden said. It featured a variety of home improvement-themed goods, from decorative pillows and a bench swing to the auction’s centerpiece item, a complete kitchen makeover.

“We’re very happy with the success and the community response,” Bodden said. “We did have a couple of heated bidding wars.”

The “Home Sweet Home” online auction raised more than $8,500 for SafeHouse of Shelby County, which goes directly to supporting all of the organization’s programs, Bodden explained.

“It’s such an easy way to participate,” Bodden said. “You can do it from the comfort of your home.”

Due to the success of the Home Sweet Home auction, Bodden said SafeHouse may plan another online auction along with other events to celebrate 25 years of service in the community.

“We hope to celebrate all year,” Bodden said.

For more information about SafeHouse of Shelby County, visit the organization’s Facebook page or Safehouse.org.