Wiregrass Angel House Brings Hope to Victims of Violent Crime | New
Wiregrass Angel House was founded in 2004 to help victims and survivors of violent crime and serves eight Wiregrass counties: Barbour, Bullock, Dale, Pike, Coffee, Geneva, Houston and Henry, as well as Holmes, Walker counties and Jackson in North Florida. The house had its first office in the “old” prison in Dothan City, but now operates in a residential style house with a backyard that has been converted into a garden where memorial services are held annually to remember those who have been lost in violent crimes. .
Katy Lewis, Outreach Advocate for Angel House, recently spoke to the Enterprise Lions Club and said that she has often been called “the face” of Wiregrass Angel House, but her responsibilities extend to well. other areas than just talking to organizations.
When a violent crime occurs in one of their service areas, Angel House representatives are called to action by law enforcement agencies present at the crime scene. Lewis said they may be called upon to sit with the victim or the victim’s family, to offer comfort or to offer other services that may be needed then or in the future. After their arrival, representatives introduce themselves and offer to stay until other family members or friends can arrive to help the victim or family. Lewis said it was not unusual for them to be called to the scene of a murder, burglary, rape, domestic violence, assault or suicide, and that staff had to learn to put aside personal emotions in order to be able to help victims. and their families; however, Lewis admitted that it is sometimes very difficult to put aside his personal feelings. Counselors are also available, as are court assistants, who help victims and families navigate the complex justice system.