Verizon Wireless Awards $10,000 Grant to Help Battered Women and Their Families

IRVINE, CA — Verizon Wireless, a recognized leader for its domestic violence awareness campaign, has awarded a $10,000 grant to Human Options: Alternatives for Abused Women and their Children. For more than 20 years, Human Options has been offering comprehensive services for victims of domestic violence. Its mission is to help battered women, their families and the community break the cycle of domestic violence.

The funds, donated from Verizon Wireless, will be used to help support Human Options' Children's Program, which includes counseling for children with deep emotional wounds that take time and effort to heal, counseling for children who are still acting out their anger and fear through aggression, and other children's services.

"Children who live in homes where there is domestic violence are not only traumatized by witnessing the violence, 30 to 40 percent of them are also physically, and, or sexually abused," said Vivian Clecak, executive director, Human Options. "When a mother accesses our services, she usually brings two or three children with her. Even though we have these little ones for only 45 to 90 days, we do make a difference."

"Studies show that one caring adult, for event a short time, can build hope and resiliency in a child. There is nothing more wonderful than to see a child begin to heal, to trust, to sleep through the night, to laugh, to play, to be a child again. Thanks to grants from charitable companies such as Verizon Wireless, we are able to break the cycle of violence for each family we serve," added Clecak.

Each child is assigned a case manager when they enter Human Options Children's Program. The Human Options case manager works closely with the child and the mother. Using age-appropriate assessment tools, the case manager determines the needs of the child and the various interventions that will be used while the child is in the program. Human Options' multi-tiered program uses play therapy, sand-tray therapy, art therapies, as well as clinical counseling and observation.

The child's counselor fills out an observation form on the child so that Human Options can address their needs and track their progress or lack of progress. The daily program focuses on one of the five senses: visual perception skills (color, shape, size), listening skills (tape, stories), vocabulary building, fine and gross motor skills, kinesthetic and tactile perception. Other themes are self-esteem and general topics. In addition, the program offers outings on a regular basis, such as visits to the zoo, picnics in the park, swimming and more.

"We are pleased to support this vital program that helps abused women and their children from all over Orange County," said Greg Klimek, regional president, Verizon Wireless. "Human Options offers all the benefits of a shelter combined with much needed support services to local women and children who are victims of domestic violence. We believe that supporting Human Options' Children's Program helps provide a safe, supportive environment for Orange County families in crisis."

About Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless is the largest wireless communications provider in the U.S. with more than 28.7 million wireless voice and data customers. The coast-to-coast wireless provider was formed by the combination of the U.S. wireless businesses of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD), including Bell Atlantic Mobile, AirTouch Cellular and GTE Wireless. Verizon Wireless has a footprint covering more than 90 percent of the U.S. population, 49 of the top 50 and 97 of the top 100 U.S. markets. The company, headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, is 40,000 employees strong. Reporters and editors can find more information about the company on the Web at