Athens Review, Athens, Texas

September 13, 2013

An event that helps

Wine and cheese fundraiser to help victims of domestic violence

From Staff Reports
The Athens Review

Athens — Its time to get your tastebuds ready for an event coming up in October.

The 2014 East Texas Crisis Center Texas Style Wine & Cheese Event is the biggest fundraiser for the organization each year. This year, the wine and cheese will be served at Stone Oak Ranch in Murchison, at 6 p.m. on Oct. 11.

“This will be our third year at Stone Oak Ranch Venue graciously provided to us by Rhonda and Stanley Ferguson who have supported us and helped us in our mission to bring hope to victims and their families,” East Texas Crisis Center director of outreach Donna Johnson said.

The event is held each October in keeping with the observance of Domestic Violence Awareness and Prevention Month.  Johnson said past events have drawn participants from all over East Texas.

“We depend greatly on this fundraising event to continue providing services to victims which include crisis intervention, safety planning, legal advocacy, court advocacy, financial assistance, counseling, support groups, women’s economics and training for law enforcement and the community,” Johnson said.

Henderson County is a rural area, but is ranked in the top 10 percent per-capita in Texas for the most domestic violence homicides.

“Our outreach works with 247 new victims per year and provides continuing services to 235,” Johnson said.

The fundraiser features Texas Wineries, music and a live and silent auction.

“The Texas Rangers baseball team donated a great auction item this year.,” Johnson said.

Tickets are $30 per person and seating is limited. For information or tickets, contact Donna Johnson at 903-675-2137 or Kim Walker at the Athens Review. Johnson said sponsors for the fundraiser are still needed.

“In 1993, we opened the first outreach center in Athens for Henderson County to serve victims of domestic violence and sexual assault,” Johnson said. “This year we celebrate our 20th year  of service to the Henderson County community. “

Johnson said everyone is affected by family violence. If it hasn’t happened to you, it has happened to one of your friends or family members.