COVE director attends national conference

February 25, 2013

LUDINGTON — Communities Overcoming Violent Encounters (COVE) Executive Director Marie Waite and board member Shelby Wagner-Hughes recently attended a national conference on Supporting Organizational Sustainability to Address Violence Against Women (SOS Institute) in San Francisco.

The two-day conference was presented by the United States Department of Justice–Office on Violence Against Women, in partnership with Futures Without Violence, a nonprofit organization. COVE was the only Michigan organization to participate in the conference.
The mission of COVE is to provide shelter, protection and advocacy to victims of domestic and sexual violence and/or homelessness and to educate the community about the root causes of violence. The goal of the conference was to equip nonprofit managers with a knowledge base from which they can create sustainable financial operation and long-term financial solvency.
Waite and Wagner-Hughes were able to attend the conference free of charge as conference costs were covered through a grant awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women. The Michigan Domestic and Sexual Violence Prevention & Treatment Board provided transportation, lodging and meals.
“As a COVE board member, it was very gratifying to attend this conference as much of the information presented affirms that we have been good stewards of our financial resources,” said Wagner-Hughes.
Waite added that, “We also learned practices that will help us achieve our long-term facility and service goals. It was a wonderful educational opportunity.”
Wagner-Hughes has served on the COVE Board of Directors for two years and Waite has been executive director for six years. COVE is currently conducting the Capital Campaign for COVE, an effort to raise a total of $2.4 million to build a new facility which would include both shelter and offices, replacing the 111-year old house that serves as its shelter and its cramped modular office structure. With community support, the new COVE facility will become a reality ensuring the continuation of both programs to help prevent such violence and the critical advocacy services provided to victims in Lake, Mason and Oceana Counties . By implementing best-practices within the state’s first purpose-built facility, COVE will become a state and national model for programs that rebuild lives and empower families.
For more information on the Capital Campaign for COVE, call: 231-233-2987 or e-mail:


Area Churches