When members of the Stillwater Police Department saw a need in the community, they took matters into their own hands.

“It’s not always the thought that counts, but the diligent action for any needed project — large or small,” said SPD Lt. Kyle Gibbs, who coordinated a project for Stillwater Domestic Violence Services.

Gibbs said the shelter had several storage sheds but no sidewalk or area for deliveries.

“SDVS leaders couldn’t bring themselves to put this wish on their list for United Way Day of Caring volunteers because it seemed so involved,” he added.

So Gibbs, six other police officers, the Fraternal Order of Police and Stillwater Concrete Co., helped construct the sidewalk and delivery area in two days.

Last year, SDVS served 247 women and children through the shelter; 418 individuals through assistance filing emergency protective orders; 845 victims through face-to-face counseling; 1,495 through a crisis intervention or phone referral; and 4,380 callers through information and service by phone.

There were 218 volunteers that provided 4,491 hours of services and 80 perpetrators of domestic violence received intervention services.

As an SDVS board member, Gibbs said he believes in the invaluable services offered and was eager to help.

“As a police officer, we deal first hand with shelter clients on a daily basis,” added Gibbs. “We know the dire need for the shelter.”

During the past three years, an average of 243 calls have resulted in a responding officer writing a report on a domestic incident, Gibbs said, and nearly 500 calls per year are recorded when an officer dealt with a domestic violence situation but didn’t file a report.

“We know the statistics cited can’t be completely comprehensive since many instances are left unreported,” said SDVS Executive Director Ralph Lindsey, Ph.D.

“We’re setting our sight on an ambitious plan to continue improving our services and ultimately replacing our shelter but are thrilled with the difference Gibbs and the Stillwater Police have made for us.”

The redesigned SDVS Web site, offers details about children’s services, protective orders, parenting, shelter, support groups, counseling and other services available to victims and batterers in Stillwater and the surrounding area.

For information, call 377-2344.

Trending Video

Recommended for you