THOMASVILLE, GA (WALB) – People will gather Thursday night in Thomasville for a candlelight vigil to raise awareness about domestic violence.
The non-profit Halcyon Home for battered women and children will hold its 14th annual Candlelight Vigil to let victims know help is just a phone call away.
The Halcyon Home for battered women and children is seeing a frightening increase in domestic violence cases.
"It grows every year. That's the sad part. It just keeps getting bigger and bigger," said Halcyon Home Administrative Assistant & Case Manager Deborah Murray.
Thursday night, a candlelight vigil will honor more than 70 Georgians who died this year from domestic violence. Ten of those victims are from Southwest Georgia.
"Domestic violence is out there. And everyone needs to be aware of it," said Murray.
Staff members hung bows, quilts, and shirts that represent the many people who have come through the shelter.
"The shirts are different colors which represents different types of abuse the victims suffered. The white is for someone who lost their life."
When the Halcyon Home first began their clothesline project, they only had an 8 foot section like this one. Now their collection spans the entire church hall and goes outside.
"It's very scary to me and to people in the community," said Murray.
Halcyon staff members want domestic violence victims to know help is available before the abuse turns deadly.
"It's very tough for somebody who has always depended on someone else to support them. But that's what we're here for. To provide resources and help. Don't be afraid to call."
The staff says the community vigil will show victims that they are supported, which is the first step on the road to recovery.
"It's very rewarding to see someone that comes in with nothing and then six months down the road they're working full time and their children are in school and they're on the path to a normal life."
A life of peace and calm after the storm. Tonight's "Path to Peace" candlelight vigil will be held St. Thomas Episcopal Church's parish hall at 216 Remington Avenue in Thomasville. The event will begin with a silent march 6:30.
Click HERE for more information on the Halcyon Home and the services it provides.
A silent march starts off the event at 6:30 p.m., followed by the vigil at 7 p.m., which includes speakers Rev. Judith Jones of St. Thomas Episcopal Church and area district attorneys Joe Mulholland (South Georgia Judicial Circuit) and J. David Miller (Southern Judicial Circuit).
Items from Halcyon Home's Clothesline, Peace Quilt and Baby Quilt projects will also be on display at the event.
The non-profit Halcyon Home, which serves Thomas, Grady, Decatur, Seminole and Mitchell counties, is the main resource for victims of domestic violence in the area.
Since the beginning of program in October 1997 through September of this year, the home has provided direct face-to-face victim services to 1,075 women and 1,368 children.
Staff has responded to 5,599 crisis calls, 21,344 client services calls, and provided 13,425 victim referrals.
1-800-284-9980 Crisis/ Support Line (anywhere in the U.S., 24 hours, 7 days) 229-226-6666 Crisis/Support Line (24 hours, 7 days) 229-226-6682 Business Line