(Beaver Dam) A Dodge County organization that helps domestic abuse victims was awarded a state grant to help pay for the renovations of a shelter in Beaver Dam. PAVE – which stands for Protect, Advocate, Validate and Educate – serves Dodge and Jefferson counties with its existing shelter in Beaver Dam and an outreach office in Watertown. The non-profit received $3.2-million in Neighborhood Investment Grant funds.
PAVE’s Executive Director Ashely Welak says the money will help them begin renovating their new location. She says the space will include administrative offices, crises counseling meeting rooms, and a larger shelter to safely house victims of domestic violence and sexual assault in Dodge County.
Welak says they have operated at their current shelter since 1990, but as a single-family private residence, it is grossly undersized to meet the increased demand for those who need victim services.
PAVE launched a capital campaign in 2020 to help raise money for the new shelter but Welak says the timing was unfortunate as the pandemic began two months into their efforts. She says despite a scaled back campaign they were still able to raise enough funds to purchase an existing building. With additional donations and pledges received to date, the organization can offset other building expenses not covered by the grant.
PAVE has been working closely with WDS Construction of Beaver Dam and an architect from Excel Engineering Company. Conceptual drawings and floor plans are complete, and the project is ready for bids. The goal is to begin construction this summer.