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KASI volunteer tax filers helped more than 11,700 families
Staff at six KDVA programs participated in EITC outreach effort
 
Volunteer tax preparers--including staff at six KDVA member programs--helped 11,737 families file their taxes this tax season.  They were part of the Kentucky Asset Success Initiative (KASI) – six regional asset-building coalitions that returned more than $16 million in refunds to their communities. 
 
Barren River Area Safe Space, Inc. (BRASS) coordinated the Barren River Asset Building Coalition, which prepared more than 1,500 tax returns in Bowling Green and surrounding counties.  Merryman House and Safe Harbor hosted sites at their programs.  Bluegrass Domestic Violence Program hosted a bilingual site at the Lexington Public Library Village Branch.
 
Volunteers at 88 locations helped households with incomes less than $50,000.  Overall, the six coalitions helped 481 more families than last year, an increase of 4 percent.
 
KDVA's member programs are critical to KASI’s success and to helping survivors during what is often a stressful time, but one that can result in the largest influx of money
 



 
 
throughout the year for many low-income households. Staff and AmeriCorps members at the following KDVA programs were certified by the IRS to prepare taxes and provided free tax-preparation assistance:  OASIS, Bethany House, The Center for Women & Families, Bluegrass Domestic Violence Program, Women’s Crisis Center – Buffalo Trace, and DOVES.
 
The asset-building coalitions aim to improve the economic well-being of lower-income families.  Their VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) sites are the cornerstone of this effort that also links households to financial education, credit counseling, and asset-building opportunities.  The coalitions also help households save more than $1.4 million each year in tax filing fees and high-cost tax-time loan products.

New resource will assist professionals working with crime victims with disabilities
 
A new resource, “Responding to Crime Victims with Disabilities: A Kentucky Resource Guide,” is now available to assist professionals who may encounter crime victims with disabilities.
 
“Individuals with disabilities are at extremely high risk of being assaulted or abused,” said State ADA Coordinator Norb Ryan. “One way to improve assistance to these individuals is to ensure that all professionals have access to the same information.”
 
Topics in the guide include specialized ADA information for law enforcement, tips on working with individual with disabilities, mandatory reporting guidelines, Kentucky court system& criminal justice process, HIPPA & law enforcement, guardianship, domestic violence orders, offered trainings, and a directory of assistance agencies.
 
Law enforcement, victims’ services, disability-related services and other professionals from allied fields can access the guide by clicking here.
 
This resource was developed by a community team that received a scholarship to attend the 2011 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Responding to Crime Victims with Disabilities 
National Training Conference. The team, a small committee of Project SAFE (Safety and Accessibility for Everyone), includes representatives from Kentucky’s Office of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Attorney General’s Office of Victim Advocacy, the Department of Criminal Justice Training, the Kentucky Domestic Violence Association and Kentucky Protection and Advocacy.
 
Project SAFE is a multi-disciplinary network working to build the capacity of professionals throughout Kentucky to provide safe, accessible and comprehensive person-centered services to individuals with disabilities who have been subjected to sexual assault and/or domestic violence.
 
For more information, contact: Norb Ryan, KY ADA Office, 502 564 3850; Elizabeth Metzger, KY Protection & Advocacy, 502-564-2967; Mary Savage, KDVA 503-209-5382.
 


 
Donor Spotlight
KDVA thanks Citi Foundation
for its recent support
click here for the full story



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