Badger High School students Matt Kretsch and Matthew Geils sell raffle tickets Oct. 25 at Simple Café, Lake Geneva, a fundraiser where the name of the future domestic abuse shelter, New Beginnings, was revealed. (Heather Ruenz photo)

By Heather Ruenz

SLN staff

There were more than 110 entries submitted in a contest to name the future Walworth County domestic violence shelter, according to Heidi Lloyd, executive director at the Association for the Prevention of Family Violence.

After narrowing it down to four finalists, Lloyd said the board of directors ranked the final four with the chosen name being New Beginnings, submitted by Amanda Kroncke. She will receive a $250 VISA gift card.

“It’s the perfect name because it’s positive and looking toward a bright future. It focuses on the mission of APFV as well as its clients – moving forward, making changes and helping all family members become emotionally healthier and more stable in other areas of their lives, too,” Lloyd said at a fundraising dinner Oct. 25 at Simple Café, Lake Geneva.

The APFV has been providing services to victims of domestic violence in the county for 39 years, Lloyd said. Since then, the Association has added assistance for survivors of sexual assault, stalking and harassment.

In 2016, she said, the APFV helped over 700 families, an increase over the previous year.

“(We) also helped nearly 300 child victims of sexual abuse and adult victims of sexual assault. That’s a total of 1,000 direct victims,” Lloyd said.

She went on to explain that abuse affects entire families, with roughly 2,000 children affected in the county that “lived through hell in their own homes. They saw it, they heard it, they lived it.”

The APFV offers numerous services to victims of abuse including a 24-hour crisis hotline, legal advocacy, crisis counseling, weekly support groups for women, teens and children recovering from the trauma of abuse, and, individual counseling with a licensed professional.

“What we don’t have, and what we are here to talk about tonight, is a safe and supportive place to go for domestic violence victims who are in danger right now and need help immediately,” Lloyd said. “Domestic violence is the direct cause of homelessness for women and children across the U.S. 50 percent of the time.”

The APFV is currently working on a capital campaign to raise funds for a much-needed emergency shelter for domestic violence victims with a goal to have it open by 2020.

For more information, including links to make a donation, call Lloyd at 262-723-4653 or visit or


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