Each year, local domestic violence shelter Harmony House puts on one of the biggest events of the summer, which typically raises more than $40,000. This year due to COVID-19, the event was canceled and the shelter lost thousands of dollars of donations that help the shelter.
For the past month, Mike Patton Auto Family has been collecting a percentage from each sale. On Wednesday, the dealership presented Harmony House with a $10,840 donation.
Incoming Harmony House President Anabeth Ivey said they knew the dealership was raising money but didn’t they would be receiving that much.
“This is a great cause that provides so much support to people in the community,” General Manager David Watts said.
For 15 years, Harmony House has been providing a safe space for those affected by domestic violence.
Harmony House provides around the clock residential shelter and safety to domestic violence female victims and their children. Harmony House guides the shelter and victims with safety planning, counseling, legal assistance, limited transportation, childcare, and training opportunities for survivor self-sufficiency.
“Since day one, Mike Patton Auto Family individually and as a business has been a major supporter of¬ ours,” said Executive Director Michele Bedingfield. “We are so grateful for the support. It’s not uncommon for me to just call and say I have a vehicle and need y’all to check it out and make sure there are no bugs and everything is installed correctly. Y’all keep everything confidential for us.”
Bedingfield said the Mike Patton family doesn’t just walk the walk, but they put into action what they say they will do.
“Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your generosity,” Ivey said.
“I’ve been a member of the Harmony House board for three years now and from day one I realized what an incredible partner you guys are. Thank you so much for being such a great community partner.”
The West Point Lake Dragon Boat race has taken place annually for four years and is the biggest fundraising event of the year for the shelter. Typically, 30 teams of 21 compete to be the fastest boat in human-powered boats. Apart from the cash raised from the race, it also helps with applying for grants as it allows Harmony House to demonstrate its connection with the community.
More than 250 cars were sold in November that raised funds for Harmony House. Harmony House hopes to host the dragon boat race once again in 2021.
“In this community, there are so few choices for women and children that are abused, and we feel really strongly about it,” Watts said. “Many victims turn back and go back home where they’re in danger because there is no place to go. We feel like supporting Harmony House is such a great thing because they get people to a safe place. We usually sponsor the race, but since it was canceled I came up with this fundraiser to continue our efforts.”