Malden women's shelter faces severe budget cuts

MALDEN, MO (KFVS) - The Center for Family Resources Executive Director Mary Small has had to deal with budget cuts before, but never thought it would get this bad.

"There have been times when we've had tough financial situations here at the center, but we've always seemed to get over and get through the situation," she said.  "But this time, it's real."

The services are free of charge, so the facility relies on state and federal grants as well as donations to get by.

Small says donations are down 40 percent from this time last year, and if more money doesn't start coming in, cuts will be made.

And the staff worries not only about their jobs, but their clients as well.

"Just wondering what will happen to our clients," said Fiscal Director Stephanie Telker.  "Where will they go to seek these services?"

"Our hotline number is anonymous, it's 24 hours. If we're not here, who are they going to call?" asked Shelter Director Starla Corbett.

The center has eight full time employees.

Small doesn't know how many jobs would be cut or when those cuts would happen, but she said nothing is off the table.

"It's just very emotional to think that you go to college to help people and because of budget cuts we may not be able to do that," said Corbett.

Small says the economic downturn has also resulted in a bigger need for the center's services, because financial stresses at home can lead to domestic violence.

For now, the center's priority is getting more money in the bank to keep its doors open.

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