Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Bowling to end domestic violence

Birmingham Group Health Services, Inc. is seeking bowlers and sponsors to participate in its annual Bowl-2-Benefit to be held March 6 at AMF Lanes, in Milford.

Proceeds from the event benefit BGHS’ The Umbrella program and Domestic Violence Services of Greater New Haven, which provide safe emergency shelter, 24-hour crisis, counseling, advocacy, support and other critical services for individuals and children affected by domestic violence, organizers said

This is the 22nd anniversary of the extremely popular community event that draws about 1,000 participants each year, organizers said.
Participants raise money for the event by forming bowling teams and collecting pledges. Individuals and/or businesses and organizations also can get involved by becoming an event or lane sponsor.

For information, call 203-736-2601 or visit

Last year, the Bowl-2-Benefit raised more than $91,000, and event organizers hope to exceed that amount this year and attract an even larger bowling crowd.

Extra bowling lanes have been added to this year’s Bowl-2-Benefit to accommodate the continued growth of the event and the addition of a second event beneficiary: DVS.

DVS, which became an official program of BGHS in 2009, serves victims of domestic violence and their children in the Greater New Haven, Milford and Shoreline communities.

Participants of the Bowl-2-Benefit will have the option to bowl for either The Umbrella or DVS during any one of five bowling sessions, which at 9 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 2 p.m., 5 p.m. and 9 p.m.

“We’re excited about the expansion of the event and the opportunity to touch the lives of an even greater number of persons affected by domestic violence,” Arlene Greco, director of Development for BGHS, said in a statement

“We’re hoping that the addition of DVS to the Bowl-2-Benefit will enable us to not only raise more funds but to also raise awareness about domestic violence among a much larger community of people.”

According to the Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence, more than 20 persons lose their lives to domestic violence in the state annually. Last year, The Umbrella program and DVS provided free emergency safe shelter, 24-hour crisis, counseling, advocacy, support and other crucial services to more than 9,000 battered women and their children in the Lower Naugatuck Valley, Greater New Haven, Milford, Shoreline and surrounding communities. Continuing decreases in state and federal funding, coupled with increases in demand for services, make fundraising events such as the Bowl-2-Benefit critical to sustaining services for those at risk and in need.

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