Branch Banking & Trust Co. made a $15,000 donation to the Pee Dee Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Abuse. Proceeds will go to the renovation of a new emergency safe shelter and crisis center for battered women and children located in the Pee Dee.
"This contribution is being made consistent with BB&T's mission to help communities we serve be better places to live," J. Frank Bullard III, regional president of BB&T, said.
The Pee Dee Coalition will use the funds to continue its efforts to respond proactively to society's problems resulting from domestic violence, rape, and child abuse and meet the needs of victims more effectively. Marie Long, development director for PDC said, "In certain circumstances, the new emergency safe shelter and updated crisis centers will make the difference between life and death for some women and children who have nowhere else to go. The value of Branch Banking & Trust's investment in the New Beginnings Expansion Project will benefit the total community.''
South Carolina ranked No. 3 in the nation for numbers of women killed by abusive partners. In Chesterfield, Marlboro and Darlington counties, victims have to travel through three counties to a safe shelter in Florence. Last year, 84 women refused services at the Florence shelter because of the distance. If the victim works and has children in school, the distance creates a hardship.
"Absolutely, this is a matter of great importance to Chesterfield County and the entire Pee Dee region," Long said. "Victims and survivors of all ages, struggling to build a life without violence, call on us for help; as a community, it is our responsibility to be there for them."
The Pee Dee Coalition is a non-profit, volunteer organization dedicated to the reduction of rape, domestic violence, child abuse, and sexual assault.