Victims of domestic violence in the Kansas City metro area have the option of receiving the services of the Domestic Violence Protection Services Agency (DVPSA), a non-profit organization that offers additional protection services to these victims and their families.
With services that range from physical protection to education and increasing awareness and more recently, home security systems, the DVPSA works with local shelters across the metro to continually provide assistance to those who want to transition to a life free of abuse.
Wade Thomas, the founder of the agency who has a background in protective services, said that he started the program back in 2009 because he saw clear gaps in the domestic violence system. He felt he could help people who had separated from their abusers but whose lives were still in danger.
“Many people receive help in leaving an abusive relationship but then discover that their abusers continue to be a threat. Our primary initiative assigns off-duty police officers to victims in order to provide a physical body of protection for people who are being threatened after separating from their abusers,” Thomas said.
When he designed the business plan back in 2008, Thomas knew that in working with donations and fund-raising events the organization’s ability to provide 24-hour protection would be limited depending on the amount of support they received from the community. Additionally, he realized that unless other layers of security were added they couldn’t properly protect victims around the clock at an affordable rate. In May, he approached Atronic Alarms Inc., a locally owned and operated security company in Lenexa , Kansas, and talked with them about additional services.
“When Wade asked for our help we didn’t even hesitate,” said Todd Harrison, operations manager of Atronic Alarms. “The vision of this organization is exceptional and we can assist them by providing the consulting, design and installation of quality security systems for these victims.”
According to Harrison, with special protocol setup a monitored security system can dispatch the police immediately if there is an alarm.
Atronic Alarms recently finished a security installation in a metro-area home where the women’s abuser had threatened her life and the lives of her family. Unfortunately, as in most cases, the restraining order she had set up will not guarantee their safety.
“Can you imagine living your life in a constant state of fear, not ever knowing when your abuser is going to show up at your house. . .your work? That is what these women live with on a daily basis and it is far more prevalent than the general population is aware of,” Thomas said. “With Atronic’s help we are now able to offer a monitored security system to these victims and their families who might not otherwise be able to afford it.”
DVPSA receives its funding through donations and its annual 5K run/walk held in August in downtown Kansas City, The Rivalry Run: Kansas vs. Missouri.
“The Rivalry Run is our biggest fundraiser,” Thomas said. “It is a fun way to raise awareness and help prevent domestic violence. We are thankful for our many sponsors and participants who support this event. We hope to see you August 20th.”