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Domestic violence center in Louisville receives millions from Jeff Bezos' foundation

Kentucky's only domestic violence and rape crisis center announced the significant amount of money will go toward emergency housing for families.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Kentuckiana's only domestic violence and rape crisis center, located in Louisville, will be able to give so many more women and families shelter ahead of this holiday season.

The Center for Women and Families announced it received $2.5 million from a foundation launched by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos.

The Bezos Day 1 Families Fund Grant issues leadership awards to organizations on the frontlines of their communities, helping families transition to stable, permanent housing.

This fund grants $123.45 million to 40 nonprofits across the U.S. to move the needle on re-housing and supporting families experiencing homelessness

The grant given to The Center is reportedly one of the largest private gifts in the organization's history, intended to support emergency housing for families impacted by intimate partner violence.

Elizabeth Wessels-Martin, president and chief empowerment officer at The Center for Women and Families, said this grant couldn't have come at a more critical time, with intimate partner violence on the rise in Louisville.

“So many survivors turn to us in the midst of a personal safety crisis, and they’re counting on us to provide a safe place for them and their children as they take steps toward building safer lives,” Wessels-Martin said.

The Center said in a press release, it plans to use the grant funds to improve and expand access to emergency shelter services for survivors who experience violence at the hands of an intimate partner, as well as their children.

Louisville has been benefitting not only from the generosity of Jeff Bezos, but also from his ex-wife, philanthropist MacKenzie Scott.

On Oct. 27, Scott donated $20 million to the Jefferson County Public Education Foundation, which provides direct financial support for JCPS. Then days later, Scott gifted the Louisville Urban League $5.7 million.

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