In the 1990s, Park City was rocked by the murders of two women at the hands of their abusive husbands. The community rallied in response, and since 1995, the nonprofit Peace House (peacehouse.org) has offered safe haven and support to survivors—mostly women and children—fleeing domestic violence. This summer, Peace House is leaving its decades-old emergency shelter (at an undisclosed location) and relocating to an $11.6 million, 42,000-square-foot campus in Quinn’s Junction.
“We are moving out of the shadows and into the light,” says Sally Tauber, marketing and development director for Peace House. “When you’re in an undisclosed location, people can’t talk about it.... We want to encourage people to come here.” The critical, eight-unit emergency shelter, which dwarfs its predecessor, is accompanied by a game-changing 12 units of transitional (6- to 24-month) housing.
“It’s really hard to rebuild your entire life in 30 days,” says board member Karen Marriott. “Our new transitional housing will give families the time, the space, and the resources to truly heal and launch successfully—and actually break the cycle of abuse.”
Aside from private bathrooms and kitchens, the new location includes communal gathering spaces and a new licensed childcare facility (46 percent of the shelter’s residents are children), allowing parents vital time to work, study, reset, and gain skills. There’s a quiet room, plus space for the organization’s case workers, legal advocacy, and clinical therapy. The campus provides a staging ground for community efforts as well—not the least of which is outreach to 10,000 students in Summit and Wasatch Counties.
Bigger digs also mean a secure courtyard where, as Executive Director Kendra Wyckoff puts it, “kids can just be kids” and adults can “breathe the fresh, mountain air and touch the sun.”