Turning Point in Warren County hopes to establish satellite shelter in Franklin County

By Jason Koch, Editor
Posted 6/13/23

“We're just trying to give them the space and the comfort to, to breathe and recover from the immediate trauma.”

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Turning Point in Warren County hopes to establish satellite shelter in Franklin County


Turning Point Advocacy Services in Warrenton has big plans to upgrade their facilities to better serve survivors of domestic and sexual violence in a seven-county area.

The service is moving forward with a site plan that calls for the extension of a kennel, play area, and walking trail. This follows a building renovation completed in April 2022.

“We would love to have a small kennel because a lot of women don’t leave because their abuser would kill their animal,” Turning Point board member Laura Adams said. “And we currently can’t accommodate pets in the shelter. So if we would like to be able to do that, they have to choose, sadly, between getting themselves to safety and leaving an animal behind.

“They’ll often stay with the animal.”

The plans will help Turning Point better serve the 160 to 190 women who need the shelter’s services each year, and who stay on average between 30 and 60 days. Those in need of help can simply show up at the facility.

“They just have to have some testimonial of abuse. We don’t require any further proof,” Adams said.

And the services help women recover and move on from abuse.

One woman who used Turning Point’s services provided this success story. The Record agreed to not print her name for her protection.

The woman is a survivor of domestic and sexual abuse and was addicted to meth for 15 years. Her significant other would not let her get clean. 

She entered Turning Point’s program earlier this year at 5 days clean and had just lost custody of her newborn. 

After utilizing Turning Point’s programs, including the substance abuse advocacy program, she’s now been clean for more than 135 days and recently saw her baby for the first time.

Providing these services has helped thousands since the facility first opened in 1994. But it does take money to help so many people.

Turning Point receives a number of grants and contributions from United Way and other campaigns. But it also relies on the community to fill in the gaps, Adams said. 

At its Boots ‘N Bling fundraiser in April, Turning Point was able to raise close to $60,000.

“It was a small crowd, but a very generous one,” Adams said.

Turning Point is also working on expanding its services to Franklin County. Franklin is currently one of the seven counties Turning Point helps, but the organization is looking to build a satellite shelter there.

“Naturally, it’s pretty hard for a survivor in Franklin County to shelter in Warren County if they’ve got children or if they’ve got jobs,” Adams said. 

Franklin County awarded Turning Point more than $600,000 for the project.

“In our conservative approach to our fiscal plan, we said that we couldn’t accept the money until we raised enough first year operating funds to ensure that we would be able to operate the shelter in the future,” Adams said. “There's an active group in Franklin County trying to raise $100,000.”

Turning Point is trying to raise $50,000 by the end of 2023 to help cover first year operating expenses, which are expected to be $300,000. Grants and contributions from organizations like United Way will also help cover costs.

Donations to Turning Point are eligible for Missouri tax credits, which provide a 70 percent credit for qualifying donations between $100 and $50,000.

In addition to serving Warren and Franklin counties, Turning Point also provides shelter to women in St. Louis, St. Charles, Montgomery, Lincoln, and Gasconade counties.

In the end, the money goes to help women who may be at the lowest point of their lives.

“We're just trying to give them the space and the comfort to, to breathe and recover from the immediate trauma,” Adams said.

About the author: Jason Koch is the editor of The Warren County Record, and covers local news and government for the newspaper. He has won multiple awards from both the Indiana and Illinois APME and from the Illinois Press Association. He can be reached at 636-456-6397 or at jason@warrencountyrecord.com

turning point, women, shelter, warren county, franklin county