Harmony House receives grant to help victims beyond the shelter

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- A domestic violence shelter in Springfield, Mo. is getting a boost in money to help victims beyond the shelter.

Harmony House announced it received a nearly $83,000 grant from the Housing and Urban Development agency.

Harmony House stays constantly full, housing domestic violence survivors in its 168 beds. But this new grant will help those men and women move on after their stay at the shelter. The money will allow them to pay for up to three months rent for survivors after they leave here.

Harmony House applied for the grant a few months ago. The organization currently has 18 apartments in the Talia Apartments for domestic survivors. But they also work with other landlords in a community as residents of Harmony House move on to their permanent homes.

Finding safe affordable housing is one of the biggest challenges survivors face, often because they weren't allowed to work, their abuser ruined their credit by not paying bills in their name, or they were evicted because of the noise and violence in their relationship.

"So this funding will really give domestic violence survivors the time to get into affordable permanent housing that is safe and secure, and then become stable," said Lisa Farmer, executive director of Harmony House. "New grant funding will provide even more help for domestic violence victims in the Ozarks."

The grant is part of funding for the continuum of care in Greene, Christian and Webster counties. It adds up to $1 million.