Rose Brooks Center began in 1978
when a group of volunteers, concerned about the abuse of women in the Kansas
City area, opened a 24-hour crisis hotline. On October 1, 1979, following the
death of Rosa Brooks and donation of her home to the cause, Rose Brooks Center
opened its first 19-bed emergency shelter. Within 24 hours, all beds were
occupied. As the needs of the women and children staying in the shelter were identified,
Rose Brooks Center began providing supportive services, including counseling
and support groups.
Since August 2001, Rose Brooks Center has occupied a 45,000 square foot campus with emergency shelter, children’s programming, outreach services, and administrative services all onsite, resulting in an effective continuum of care for the women and children we serve. As a result of the dramatic increase in demand for services over the past several years, Rose Brooks Center recently completed an expansion which significantly increased our capacity to serve more women and children. The expansion included the addition of resident rooms, facilities for outreach services, a health clinic, as well as the only onsite pet shelter in our region for residents with pets.
Founded by volunteers, Rose Brooks Center still depends substantially on generous individuals willing to donate their time and resources. Rose Brooks Center leverages the help of over 3,000 volunteers every year.
Our comprehensive services include the following: a 24-hour crisis line; emergency shelter for women and children; children’s therapeutic programming; case management, economic empowerment programming; financial literacy and management education; employment advocacy; court advocacy; outreach therapy; a housing and economic advocacy program; a school-based violence prevention program including therapy, peer groups, and classroom education; a hospital-based crisis intervention and advocacy program serving eight local hospitals and eleven clinics; and a Lethality Assessment Program with local police patrols.
In 2015, Rose Brooks Center provided 30,899 safe nights to women and children in shelter, 25,802 safe nights to women and children in housing, answered 7,857 calls from individuals and families searching for help and support, offered 4,962 hours of counseling and services to 422 women and children, served 1,290 survivors through our hospital-based advocacy program, and helped 1,486 survivors navigate the legal system.
Rose Brooks Center envisions a world free of violence. We serve as a leader of innovative, comprehensive family violence services, sharing our legacy of hope through advocacy, education, and empowerment. We believe that violence can be eliminated if we commit to change. We’ve served the Kansas City community for 38 years, and we work daily to rebuild, reclaim, and save lives threatened by domestic violence.
During my past 20 years as CEO, Rose
Brooks Center’s thoughtful and purposeful expansion has been focused on removing
barriers for survivors and achieving our mission of ending the cycle of
domestic violence for individuals and families. Today, Rose Brooks Center
offers a full continuum of services to increase victim safety and to heal and
rebuild the lives of those impacted by domestic violence. Each of our programs
and collaborative efforts furthers our commitment to our mission whether it is
through supporting a survivor of domestic violence in crisis, or through partnering
with the police department to better respond to survivors in need when they
call for help, or through teaching our children and future leaders the skills
to lead violence-free lives. Rose Brooks Center takes the life-saving work that
we do seriously.
Our greatest success comes in our ability to impact the lives of those affected by domestic violence. We stand by victims every day in court as they seek safety through our justice systems despite their personal fears. We support survivors as they make the brave, though frightening, decision to begin their life anew within our shelter, often leaving their belongings behind in search of a new beginning. We train our community partners, including other services providers, law enforcement and medical professionals, on how to understand the nature and dynamics of domestic violence in hope that they, too, will advocate for survivors within their respective fields. Through these services and more, each year Rose Brooks Center impacts the lives of 15,000 people and makes our community a safer place for all. None of this would be possible without the support of our generous community and donors.
While proud of our successes, we acknowledge the great challenges that need to be addressed in order to reduce the alarming number of domestic violence incidents in our community. Unfortunately, the rate of these incidents remains critically high, as Rose Brooks Center is located in Jackson County and Kansas City—each of which ranks with the highest number of domestic violence incidents statewide. These figures translate into a desperate need for our services. Sadly, nearly every bed of Rose Brooks Center’s 100-bed shelter is occupied each night of the year, and in 2015, we answered 7,857 hotline calls, which averages to more than 20 calls per day. Our dedicated staff respond to individuals experiencing domestic violence crises with kindness, compassion and resources for safety.
Despite these challenges, we continue to move forward with hope and dedication while working diligently to overcome barriers. As we are currently in the process of preparing our new strategic plan, I have been meeting with all of the programs and directors to assist in developing future focus areas. This plan will be around three critical initiatives: Keeping Families Safe, Creating a Safer Community, and Breaking the Cycle of Domestic Violence. Rose Brooks Center has demonstrated its capacity to grow and sustain services throughout its nearly 40-year history by challenging itself to meet the complex, changing needs of victims. Together we can put an end to the cycle of domestic violence.
Community members contacting
the 24-Hour Crisis Line will receive
support, information on community resources and how to access community
resources, and develop a plan for safety. We will respond to an average of
80 victims per month who are identified by law enforcement as being at high
risk for lethality.
4,500 community members contacting
the 24 Hour Crisis Line will receive
assistance with developing a plan for safety. The 24 hour crisis line will respond to an
average of 80 victims per month who are at high risk for lethality.
Sofia, 11, came with her mother to Rose Brooks Center after her abusive father had threatened her mother’s life. She arrived withdrawn, distrustful, and terrified. Immediately, Sofia received warm meals, clothes, toiletries, a stuffed backpack and transportation to her new school. Working with a therapist, Sofia at first said she felt “empty” inside. She then worked with therapeutic sand art. Her first creation was ‘home,’ which she displayed with black sand, a leafless tree, and a small dark house. Over several months, Sofia worked with her therapist for coping strategies and tools of resilience. A change took place. She stood straighter, laughed easily, and felt hopeful about her future. Her sand tray creations showed this transformation, with vibrant green sand, flowering trees, a stream, animals, and children playing. Upon leaving Rose Brooks, Sofia will still face challenges, but she carries with her new strategies for resilience.
In the safety of local hospitals and clinics, the Bridge Program serves adult and child patients who are experiencing domestic violence. The goal is to bridge the gap between medical services and domestic violence services in order to offer victims of domestic violence a life without abuse.
In one case, the Victim Advocate assisted a victim who had been stalked by her (separated) husband. Due to the nature, severity and frequency of the phone calls the victim had received, the Victim Advocate advocated for her to be seen by the domestic violence police detective. The domestic violence detective realized the victim had received over 100 calls in one day, and hundreds in previous weeks. After safety planning, the Victim Advocate advised her to consider seeking shelter, which she then did. The police later informed the Victim Advocate that, as soon as the victim had left, her abuser had broken into her home, destroyed property, and was waiting for her to return. The police arrived on the scene and arrested him. State prosecutors charged the suspect and he was then incarcerated. The victim is certain that, had she not been contacted and gone to shelter, he would have killed her.
Goal ONE: Children will increase safety.
75% of children will demonstrate appropriate social skills.
80% of children will be able to express their feelings in a healthy manner.
75% of children will begin to have a positive sense of self.
Goal: Children will improve their ability to respond to and deal with conflict.
80% of children will identify healthy coping strategies to deal with conflict.
75% of children will demonstrate non-aggressive methods for responding to conflict.
75% of children will demonstrate healthy coping strategies to deal with conflict.
‘Hala,’ 43, came to the Rose Brooks Center, fleeing from her husband who had assaulted her. Immediately deciding she wanted to start over again, she needed career assistance, since her husband had been controlling and had not let her work for many years. Her Employment Advocate discussed different potential career paths which aligned with Hala’s interests and experiences. But most of all, Hala said that she loved to cook and had been volunteering as a chef’s assistant at a local church that fed the homeless. Her Employment Advocate then helped her with her resume, job search, and interviews. While still at Rose Brooks’ shelter, Hala secured a job cooking at a local casino. She has done so well, that now the chef has begun to ask Hala for advice on spices and recipes. Today, Hala has choices—either to continue upward mobility at the casino, or to enroll in a local culinary arts program. Or both. Because of Rose Brooks, Hala has these choices, and a new life, ahead of her.
In order to achieve our mission of breaking the cycle of domestic violence we provide comprehensive services to domestic violence victims and the community. Through our three initiatives, Keeping Families Safe, Rebuilding Lives and Creating a Safer Community, Rose Brooks Center offers a continuum of care to provide a safety net and support services to domestic violence victims and to prevent future violence. Our programs reached nearly 15,000 individuals in 2015, and our reach continues to drastically grow as we provide life-saving services to more women and children in serious danger through our Lethality Assessment Program. Because of this program, law enforcement officers have a tool to help determine a victim’s risk of being killed by an abuser. Since the program’s implementation it has drastically increased our emergency hotline call volume as well as demand for all of our services.
Susan Miller has more than twenty years of experience in human services. She graduated second in her class with a Bachelor of Arts from North Central College in Naperville, Illinois, then went on to the University of Illinois to earn her Masters in Social Work. She did post-graduate work through Northwestern University at The Family Institute of Chicago, earning a certificate in Family Therapy.
Dan earned his Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of Central Florida and is a Certified Public Accountant. Dan has over twenty years of experience in audit, accounting, financial operations and management. His accounting and finance experience includes areas such as payroll, benefits, general ledger, financial reporting, cash flow management forecasting and budgeting. He also has extensive experience with federal and state funded program compliance and contract/grant reporting.
Dan moved to Kansas City from Florida in mid-2015, and before joining Rose Brooks Center, Dan worked as a Contractor/Consultant for other organizations such as State Street in their Financial Reporting Unit and Cochran Head and Vick, CPAs as a Contract Auditor. While in Florida, Dan was the Chief Financial Officer for the Council on Aging of Volusia in Daytona Beach, the major elder services non-profit organization where he managed the finance department and overall $7 million budget. Prior to that Dan worked for Olivari & Associates, P.A., Certified Public Accountants and Consultants as an Audit and Assurance Manager and Tax Accountant. Also in his career, Dan worked for METLIFE, Corporate Controllers Division in various roles, such as Finance and Project Management, Accounting Manager in HR Controller’s Department, Budget and Expense, and a Financial Analyst as well as other finance and accounting roles.
Ms. Svoboda is responsible for all fundraising for the organization. She and her development team are successfully able to raise over $5 million per year to support the organizational costs in addition to the recent Safe Futures capital campaign necessary to renovate, enhance, and expand the agency's physical structures. She has over 20 years of experience in fundraising, for profit and non-profit management and as well as direct services. Prior to coming to Rose Brooks Center she was the Development Director for Wayside Waifs pet shelter. She also worked previously for Rose Brooks Center providing violence prevention services through the Project SAFE program.
Rose Brooks Center is committed to a strategic, goal-oriented management approach. All decisions affecting programs and operations are tied to the organization’s strategic plan, which is reviewed by the board of directors on a quarterly basis. To create a unified philosophy and approach throughout the organization, every staff member has a copy of Rose Brooks Center’s strategic plan, which is used as a tool in annual employee performance evaluations. As a result, we are proud to say that we achieve our goals and objectives in a timely manner, and continue to move forward in the field of domestic violence prevention and intervention.
Indirect Public Support HelpIndirect public support represents revenue received through solicitation campaigns. This includes funding United Way and other federated fundraising organizations, but does not include donor designated contributions.
Earned Revenue HelpEarned revenue represents income generated in direct exchange for a product or service.Earned income includes income from government contracts.
Rose Brooks Center prides itself on being a trustworthy steward of funds entrusted in us to carry out our mission. Rose Brooks Center has worked with domestic violence victims in the Kansas City metropolitan area for over 35 years, and as a result has witnessed the impacts of domestic violence on victims and their children. We have expanded facilities and programs in the past to meet growing community needs. Construction of our current facility was completed in 2000. At that time Rose Brooks Center operated on a $1.8 million budget, serving 5,985 women and children annually. Today, our organization has grown significantly and in 2015 we provided services to over 15,000 individuals, operating on a $5.6 million budget.
Greater Kansas City Community Foundation
1055 Broadway Blvd., Suite 130, Kansas City, Missouri 64105
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