A project aimed at helping Hmong refugees deal with domestic abuse has received a major boost in funding, and it couldn't come at a better time.
Three thousand Hmong refugees will be in Wisconsin by this fall, more than 400 of them in the Wausau area. That's part of the reason the Department of Workforce Development is giving $115,000 to the Wausau Hmong Association. The money will be used for the refugee family strengthening project, which works to prevent domestic abuse in the Hmong community.
DWD secretary Roberta Grossman says, "We can provide culturally sensitive services to help those families leave the cycle of violence and become successful."
The project provides newly immigrated families with bilingual counselors and helps them adjust to the different cultures of a new country.
Peter Yang of the Wausau Hmong Association says, "It's definitely needed especially in the domestic violence area. We have not done a whole lot to address the issue and also to work with the community so this funding comes at a very critical time."
The Wausau Area Hmong Association is not the only Hmong organization to receive these additional funds from the state. Overall, about $600,000 is being handed out across the state.