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Moving Moms Forward - April 17 | Community Spirit

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Moving Moms Forward - April 17
Moving Moms Forward - April 17

*Information provided by Two Men And A Truck

One in four women in America will be the victim of domestic violence and  victims often find themselves without basic resources. Five years after helping launch the Movers for Moms® program to collect essential supplies for moms living in domestic abuse or homeless shelters on Mother’s Day, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® of Grand Rapids announced the introduction of the Moving Moms Forward initiative.

The Moving Moms Forward initiative is the logical evolution of Movers for Moms® from a short-term assistance program to a long-term sustainability solution. Partnering with the YWCA of West Central Michigan, Michigan Works! 
Kent and Allegan Counties, and the Women’s Resource Center, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® Moving Moms Forward seeks to offer long-term assistance to women in crisis through the education of local employers on domestic abuse and available resources – including tools to assist employees dealing with abuse at home.

"We are honored to be a part of such an important conversation,” said Carla Blinkhorn, YWCA CEO. The economic situation and stability of a domestic violence victim is often the difference between her ability to safely leave her relationship and homelessness. It's heartening to know so many employers, led by Two Men and a Truck, are partnered with us in helping victims become survivors."

From 8:00 a.m. until 10:30 a.m., Wednesday, April 17, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® and its partners will host an informational and educational forum for local employers, human resource professionals and job developers. A panel 
consisting of key executives from highly-respected West Michigan businesses and organizations, including Kelley Losey of Cascade Engineering, Tom Cottrell of YWCA West Central Michigan, Julie DeBoer of Safe Haven Ministries, and Mindy Ysasi Castanon with Herman Miller, will lead the discussion. Topics will range from definitions of domestic violence and tips for creating a safe workplace environment to company best practices and personal success stories.

“With the growth of Movers for Moms® since its inception in Michigan in 2008, franchisees across the state thought the time was right to build on the program’s success by introducing a collaborative effort that seeks to provide more long-term assistance to victims of domestic violence through education and awareness,” said Kyle Norcutt, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® Grand Rapids North franchisee. “Our hope with the Moving Moms Forward initiative is that once women leave the shelter they will have the resources and opportunities they need to stay out of the shelter for good.”

Prior to the forum, Melanie Bergeron, chair of TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®, is scheduled to give the keynote address at the forum, which will be held at the YWCA West Central Michigan’s main office on Sheldon Blvd. in downtown Grand Rapids. Bergeron will discuss the moving company’s continued commitment to supporting women in crisis and the rapid growth of the Movers for Moms® program, thanks to the generosity of local organizations across the country.

In 2012, the Movers for Moms® program partnered with more than 200 schools in 27 states to collect over 116,000 items for donation to women in 100 shelters. This year, Movers for Moms® will run in 31 states to support the victims of domestic abuse and homelessness.

Before launching Moving Moms Forward throughout Michigan, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is running a pilot program in Grand Rapids in 2013. If the program is successful, Moving Moms Forward likely will expand to other cities in 2014.

Attendees to the Moving Moms Forward forum are being asked to bring in an item for donation to Movers for Moms®. Items can include soap, shampoo, deodorant and other toiletries. For a list of items requested by the YWCA West Central Michigan, visit http://www.ywcawcmi.org/support-wishlists.php. Those donating an item at the forum will be automatically entered into a raffle to win lunch for their office – up to 20 people (maximum $150 total) – from Tropical Smoothie Café on 28th Street in Cascade.

Follow Movers for Moms® online at www.facebook.com/MoversforMoms or @MoversforMoms.

With more than 230 locations, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the largest franchised moving company in North America. For more information or to schedule a move, contact 877.263.6444 or visit www.twomenandatruck.com.