The Merryman House closed on the purchase of the Berger Road property from the McCracken County School Board at Paducah Bank this afternoon.
With the closing on this property, Merryman House now enters the public-phase of its capital campaign and seeks and encourages individual, corporate, and foundation support for the funds it needs to develop its new campus. Gina Leeper, Campaign Chair for the capital campaign project, is thrilled with yet another milestone being met by the Merryman House. “The closing is a game changer. We can now kick off the public phase of the capital campaign with this milestone accomplishment,” she said.
Essentially, this new campus will become a state-wide resource for survivors of domestic violence while keeping the Purchase Region as its main priority. Individuals in need of services from outside of the Purchase area will be taken at either the Merryman House or MCCC when bed space is available. Currently Merryman House operates as a 24-bed emergency shelter and often has a waiting list. The new campus will allow Merryman House to operate as a 36-bed shelter, a large gain on available shelter spaces for those in desperate need to escape from intimate-partner abuse.
“Many people do not realize that the Merryman House serves not just Paducah but also our 8 most western counties in the Purchase Area Development District, including Ballard, Calloway, Carlisle, Fulton, Graves, Hickman, Marshall, and McCracken,” said Board Chair Crystal Reid. “During the transition to the new campus we will continue to operate a safe and secure emergency shelter for those individuals or families who are forced to leave their homes due to violence, most often fleeing in fear of their lives, including women, children, and men,” she added.
As a part of its services, Merryman House offers individual and group counseling, financial counseling, case management, legal advocacy, and children’s services through its staff of specially trained advocates. Merryman House offers housing advocacy, community education, and professional training as their clients begin a new life free from violence.
The proposed new campus consists of approximately 26 acres and 8 institutional buildings, and will be where Merryman House and MCCC will collaborate to provide not only domestic abuse serves but also substance abuse services. “It’s just the beginning of a new era of collaborative trauma-informed services in our area,” said Executive Director Mary Foley. “Residential domestic violence services and substance abuse services provided in this collaborative way are not offered anywhere in our region, with the closest program being located in Owensboro, KY,” she continued.
Merryman House and MCCC are investing $1.5 million back into our community as the combined purchase price for the campus. Together the two companies will add approximately 30 new jobs at the new campus in Paducah while serving families living in the 8 western counties in the Purchase Area.
Merryman House remains in a capital campaign and continues to seek individual, corporate, and foundation support for developing its new campus. The organization was awarded a challenge grant in August 2016 of $125,000 from The Eckstein Charitable Trust to encourage giving to the Merryman House Capital Campaign. The foundation will match dollar-for-dollar new cash gifts made to the Capital Campaign before December 14, 2016, up to $125,000. With the leadership of Campaign Chair Gina Leeper and the capital campaign team, Merryman House continues to develop donor streams, including both monetary and in-kind donations. If you would like to learn more or give to the capital campaign, please contact Gina Leeper at [email protected].