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2010 SafePlace Celebration: New Beginnings
11/19/2010 - By Austin, TX

2010 SafePlace Celebration: New Beginnings

Academy-award winning actress and noted social activist Olympia Dukakis was in Austin to speak on behalf of SafePlace at the SafePlace Celebration: New Beginnings.

Ms. Dukakis spoke to a crowd of more than 500 donors; city, state and county officials; board members; volunteers and other supportive community members at the Hyatt Regency Austin.

After taking a tour of SafePlace on Thursday morning, Ms. Dukakis spoke about SafePlace and the breadth its programs. “I’ve been involved with other centers and not one of them is nearly as extensive; SafePlace has a shelter where women cook together, they have schools, they have nurseries, programs for women, it is beautiful. There is an air of hope there, at SafePlace, because these women live in a community together.”

Ms. Dukakis passionately quoted national sexual and domestic violence statistics before congratulating the crowd for joining in the efforts of SafePlace to help end the cycle of abuse in Austin. “The idea that dominance is acceptable is unacceptable, but the good news is that with the help of all of you, community leaders, legislators, corporate sponsors, we are becoming increasingly intolerant of abuse…the import and the impact of your efforts to nurture a SafePlace in your community should be celebrated."

One of the highlights of the afternoon was hearing the emotional story of survival from Lindsay Martin, who spoke about the SafePlace Hospital Advocate who met her at the hospital on the afternoon of her rape as well as the role of other SafePlace programs in helping her heal from the trauma she experienced. Lindsay’s testimony underscored the need for these services in our community.
Overall, the event was a huge success that helped raise more than $165,000 for SafePlace programs and services to help end sexual and domestic violence in our community.

Photos: David Saenz

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