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Xplorers to feature Family Crisis Center at July 16 game

July 11, 2005 - arenafootball2 (af2) - Memphis Xplorers News Release

SOUTHAVEN-Families in crisis who don't know where to turn now have a resource: the North Mississippi Sexual Assault Resource Center's Family Crisis Center. The Memphis Xplorers will spotlight the Family Crisis Center as the non-profit of the night during their upcoming game against the Manchester Wolves on Saturday, July 16.

The organization has helped 4,800 people in three years, through advocacy, awareness, referrals, support groups and Christmas programs.

"Our mission emphasizes helping victims of sexual assault, but we want to help victims of all kinds get the physical and legal aid they need," Family Crisis Center director Debbie Houck said.

The Family Crisis Center is expanding its Christmas program to include not only DeSoto, but also Tate, Panola, Tunica and Marshall Counties. The program works with the Department of Human Services to gather names and information of needy children. Parents supply the Family Crisis Center with a Christmas wish list for each child, which often includes requests for clothing and educational aids.

The Center also works with Memphis Marines' "Toys 4 Tots" program, which recently donated $250,000 worth of Bratz dolls - a tractor trailer full - to the program.

Additionally, volunteers are opening "Southern Comfort" restaurant on Stateline Road in Southaven to help the Center raise money. The restaurant will give 20 percent of its profits monthly to the center to help pay overhead costs. Houck also hopes to help other struggling non-profits by conducting charity fundraisers through the restaurant.

All of this is to help victims have a safe haven and get access to the resources they need. Houck would eventually like to offer forensic exams and a place for supervised visits between children and parents, among other services.

"As the victim, you often don't know your rights," Houck said. "I just want to make sure victims in DeSoto County know their rights and know where to go from there. It's a service DeSoto County needs. Generally, you only get that information by paying a heavy price for it. Through our centers, you don't have to do that."

Volunteers are also helping raise money by selling tickets to the Memphis Xplorers game against the Manchester Wolves on July 16 at 7 p.m. To find out more about NMSARC's Family Crisis Center, visit their table at the game or call Houck at 662-280-9111.

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The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

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