Keeping a Mom and Her Children Safe

Over the last 17 years, since our organization’s inception, we have received innumerable emergency calls, each one a unique case. Our mission is to preserve affordable housing and revitalize vulnerable neighborhoods throughout Milwaukee and Waukesha counties. Although, our mission goes far beyond improving the housing stock and creating equitable neighborhoods in the Milwaukee area. We are driven to create safe and happy environments for our homeowners. That is why yesterday’s emergency phone call was felt more than usual.

Thursday morning we received a phone call from the Milwaukee Police Department about a resident who had been experiencing domestic abuse and break-ins on several occasions. This bright young woman is a mother of seven young children and was scared for her life, and the life of her children. Thursday Morning at 1:00 a.m there was another break-in, hopefully the last one before we could step in.

Thursday morning we went to their home with officers to assess the situation and find collaborative solutions to protect her and her family. We strive on helping Milwaukee residents not only with home repairs but also with community building; our holistic approach is pertinent to the safety of residents and neighborhoods overall. That same morning we created an appropriate scope of work to fix the smashed door and ensure the safety of this family. Thankfully, due to our committed partners and contractors we finished the work the same day, so this family could sleep soundly.

We installed a new door-frame, a heavy steel door, a new doorknob and deadbolt lock. We also installed an additional front security door and cut a piece of lumber for behind the door for additional reinforcement. A new solar sensor powered light was also installed for extra security. Without these security modifications, this resident would be left with few options, and staying in her home would not be one of them. She would’ve had to move to a shelter with her seven children, which in most cases is not an option with a family of her size. We are proud to serve the community alongside our partners like the Milwaukee Police Department and ease the minds of our neighbors in need.

Domestic violence is a serious problem plaguing the Milwaukee community. If you or someone you know is or has experienced domestic violence below is a link to resources offered throughout the city. Let’s break the cycle and build stronger, healthier and safer neighborhoods together.

UPDATE: Within the last week, this young mother and her children experienced another attempted break-in. Thankfully, due to the door and security measures put in place by our team, this mother had time to call 9-1-1. The perpetrator who was frequently breaking in and causing harm to this family was finally arrested. After weeks of unrest and anxiety, this mother can sleep soundly knowing the perpetrator is behind bars and her home is a safe place again. Our organization is unbelievably grateful for our partners at the Milwaukee Police Department, as are our homeowners, for keeping our communities safe and our minds at ease.

Amy Sorenson