Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) on Monday announced federal grants to assist crime victims, including nearly $2 million for programs in Frederick County.
The federal government awarded Maryland more than $46 million through Victim Assistance grants, according to a press release from Hogan’s office.
The funds are geared toward providing services and treatment for crime victims.
Heartly House, a Frederick nonprofit that provides services to people affected by domestic violence, was the biggest local benefactor of the grants at more than $1 million.
“We’re just incredibly grateful to the governor and the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention. ... It’s a really great asset,” said Inga James, Heartly House’s president and executive director.
The $1 million represents a near doubling of the grant funds it received before, James said. It also provides for two years of funding rather than one, increasing the program’s stability.
With the grant, Heartly House can fully fund staff positions and look to expand its services. The organization plans to hire a bilingual counselor and another legal advocate, according to James.
The legal advocates guide domestic violence victims through obtaining a peace order and provide information about other court matters. They also accompany domestic violence victims in the courtroom.
The group anticipates that it will be able to respond to more possible cases of domestic violence in the hospital. Currently, the Heartly House staff has the resources to talk only with victims of sexual assault in the hospital, James said, but the grants should allow them to contact victims of domestic violence, as well.
Glenn Fueston, the executive director of the Governor’s Office of Crime Control & Prevention, said in a press release that all eligible applications for the Crime Act Victim Assistance grants were approved, including $35.9 million to continue and expand projects and $10.2 million for new projects or services.
Hogan said that the funding “will be dedicated to protecting the most vulnerable among us, to improving services for victims, and to providing our citizens with the most basic rights of safety and security.”