KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Newhouse, Kansas City’s first domestic violence shelter, has been awarded a $15K grant from the When Georgia Smiled: The Robin McGraw Revelation and Dr. Phil Foundation. Funds from this grant will support the much-needed renovation of the Children’s Center for Education, Innovation & Healing located onsite at the shelter. Approximately 50 percent of those served at Newhouse are children.

Robin and Dr. Phil McGraw have been longtime advocates for domestic violence and sexual assault prevention, speaking frequently about these issues on the Dr. Phil show and through the mission of their foundation, When Georgia Smiled.  “It is an extreme honor to have been chosen as the Kansas City shelter to partner with When Georgia Smiled to carry out our like mission for adults, children and families to live a life free of domestic violence and sexual assault,” said Newhouse President & CEO Courtney Thomas.

Newhouse is asking the community to step forward to match this generous grant to address the critical repairs needed in the Children’s Center for Education, Innovation & Healing. Roof leaks have created issues with flooring, walls and casework, all of which must be replaced.

Newhouse operates with the smallest budget of any domestic violence shelter in the metro area, yet provides 88 beds of safety each night, as well as healing therapy, court advocacy, transitional housing, substance abuse support and the resources to help clients reach a place of self-sufficiency. Newhouse serves women, children and men who have experienced the trauma of domestic violence. 

“Phil and I are in awe of all Newhouse has been able to accomplish over the last nearly 50 years on such a limited budget,” said Robin McGraw. “When Georgia Smiled is honored to support their important work and the lives they are transforming. We believe in the mission of Newhouse, their team and mostly in the brave survivors they are serving. Our goal is for this to be just the beginning of a long-term partnership.”

We believe in the mission of Newhouse, their team and mostly in the brave survivors they are serving. Our goal is for this to be just the beginning of a long-term partnership.

The lifesaving services Newhouse provides are needed now more than ever with domestic violence calls up more than 22 percent year-over-year during the COVID-19 outbreak.

“Domestic violence knows no socioeconomic, racial, educational or gender boundaries. It’s a community problem that impacts all of us and takes us all working together to solve. Our children’s services at Newhouse are critical to interrupt, stop and break the cycle of domestic violence. These essential repairs allow us to continue to provide a place of safety, healing and learning for the children and families we serve,” said Newhouse President & CEO, Courtney Thomas.

The Children’s Center for Education, Innovation & Healing is part of the shelter’s extensive children’s program.  “Newhouse is grateful for this generous gift from Robin and Dr. Phil McGraw and When Georgia Smiled, and we hope the Kansas City community will step forward to help us double the impact of this generous gift,” says Courtney Thomas, President/CEO. 

Double the Gift!


About Newhouse

Every day, Newhouse provides shelter and protection for up to 88 survivors of domestic violence, including men, women and children. A safe-haven for those fleeing abuse for 49 years, Newhouse provides emergency shelter, food, clothing, children’s services, an onsite school, mental health services and much more. Together, we are building a stronger tomorrow. Discover more: NewhouseShelter.org

About When Georgia Smiled

When Georgia Smiled: The Robin McGraw Revelation and Dr. Phil Foundation is devoted to helping advance organizations and programs that serve victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, child abuse and individuals facing crisis to live healthy, safe and joy-filled lives. We also support communities that have been severely affected by disasters. Discover more: whengeorgiasmiled.org. 

For almost 50 years, Newhouse has provided safety and helped to give voice to those who have been silenced through domestic violence. While we know that domestic violence knows no racial, socioeconomic, gender, or educational boundaries, racial equity is so important to our organization because we know that structural racism is a key contributor to our very need to exist. People of color often face enhanced obstacles and barriers in leaving abusive situations. We are committed to shattering those barriers.

Last week, we all watched in horror as George Floyd took his last breath under the nine-minute knee of a Minnesota police officer. Unfortunately, this is one of many examples of ongoing heartache and racial injustice, but most importantly it shines a light on the drastic changes needed in our country to dismantle systemic racism.

Now is the time for courageous conversations, but most importantly courageous actions.

Words don’t equal action. Words alone don’t create change. Action changes outcomes. Action changes lives. Action changes communities. It’s time to act.

It’s time to act. You, me, all of us. Everyone can take at least one step into action to drive positive change.  When you take that first step, it will inspire you to take another and another and another, as you watch your actions bring about transformation to achieve a place of true equality. You can do it. We have confidence in you.

Now is the time for you to amplify the voice of Black Americans and people of color by using your voice, your privilege, and your actions to drive positive change. No step is too small, but it’s important to note that allyship isn’t a one-time effort. It’s an ongoing commitment to:

  1. Educate yourself. It isn’t the role of Black Americans and people of color to school you or give you a history lesson. Do the work.
  2. Be vulnerable. Stand up even when it feels uncomfortable. It’s OK to say you don’t have all the answers or know exactly what do to – but be committed to standing up and checking your own biases.
  3. Make a statement – connect. Let people of color know you care, you see them, you hear them and you stand beside them.
  4. Use your voice. Transfer the benefits of your privilege to those who lack it. Your voice can and will inspire others to start with step one above.
  5. Acknowledge that while you, too, feel pain, sadness, and discomfort, the conversation is not about you.
  6. Check your leadership and institutional practices. How are you ensuring that diversity, inclusion, and equity are authentically ingrained in your culture?

Now it’s your turn. It’s your time to stand up for and stand with Black Americans and people of color. Will you join us?

To all of our friends, family, and community members of color… We see you. We hear you. We stand with you. We care. We will not be silent.


Courtney Thomas, President & CEO | Newhouse Shelter + the entire Newhouse Team


Ted McKnight, known by his endearing fans as “Touchdown Teddy” is a proud supporter of Newhouse’s mission to break the cycle of domestic violence. Transform the lives of survivors by donating now.

By: Emily Holwick // Channel 9


As businesses begin to reopen, a Northland nonprofit is still deciding when to open its store. The Assistance League of Kansas City is mostly funded by The Resale Shop, a secondhand store in Gladstone. It’s had to close because of the pandemic, but the group is still helping people in need across the metro.

“We had $6,000 in donations, and then we turned those $6,000 in donations around and gave them to Newhouse Domestic Violence Shelter and Feed Northland Kids,” she said.


Read the full news story here >>

North American Savings Bank provides $115,000 gift to victims of domestic violence

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Newhouse, Kansas City’s first domestic violence shelter, receives one of its largest corporate gifts of $115,000 from the North American Savings Bank (NASB). Their support over the last two years has funded a significant portion of our children’s program.

Due to the Coronavirus crisis, many nonprofits are facing financial hardships and experiencing a decrease in funding for critical programs and services offered to our community. This gift comes at the vital time to ensure Newhouse can continue providing life-saving services for some of Kansas City’s most vulnerable populations.

“We understand the additional pressures and financial challenges victims of domestic abuse are facing during this pandemic,” said NASB CEO Paul Thomas. “We’re pleased this donation will help alleviate some of those immediate hardships and provide greater resources for those families.”

In 2018, Missouri domestic violence shelters provided shelter for over 12,000 individuals and families, but over 26,000 individuals and families had unmet needs due to a lack of bed space and staffing (Missouri Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence). With a 22 percent increase in domestic violence calls compared to this time last year, now is a critical time to provide comprehensive care to families in the Kansas City community who are isolated, alone, and fearing for their lives.

“All Kansas Citians deserve to live in an environment where they are safe, respected and free from an environment of violence,” says Courtney Thomas, Newhouse CEO/President. “Breaking the cycle of domestic violence is truly a community effort. We are so grateful for NASB’s generous commitment to stand with survivors during this critical time.”

COVID-19 has created many barriers for survivors in the Kansas City community, but Newhouse is committed to ensuring that survivors have a safe place to stay.

“Through this crisis, we are discovering our collective power as a voice for hope,” Thomas says. “Hope gives survivors, and all of us, strength to overcome and rise.”

Learn more about NASB’s commitment to helping our community grow by visiting their website at nasb.com.


About Newhouse

Every day, Newhouse provides shelter and protection for up to 88 survivors of domestic violence, including women, men and children. We have been a safe-haven for those fleeing abuse for 49 years, providing:

Emergency shelter, food, clothing, and children’s services
Healing through mental health services and therapy for adults and children
Case management and transitional/permanent housing services
Court advocacy, education and community awareness
The only on-site school at a domestic violence shelter providing education for Kindergarten through 6th grade.

With your support of our life-saving work, together we can build a stronger tomorrow. Discover more: newhouseshelter.org.

by Glenn E. Rice, Katie Bernard and Cortlynn Stark // KC Star


From March 24, when the orders went into effect, until Thursday, 911 calls for domestic violence in Kansas City climbed 26% compared to the same time last year, said Capt. Tim Hernandez, who supervises the Kansas City Police Department’s special victims’ unit, tasked with investigating domestic violence, child abuse and sex assault crimes. Law enforcement in other jurisdictions, including Johnson and Platte counties, also reported increases.




One survivor who has lived in the Newhouse domestic violence shelter for about six months said it breaks her heart to think about the victims calling in to crisis hotlines these days. She worries about what she would do if a virus outbreak forced the shelter to close.

“I don’t have family here,” she said. “During this time we’re not technically allowed to travel so I wouldn’t get to try to at least go home to my family.

The shelter has employed social distancing gradually to minimize the trauma experienced by residents. Residents with roommates have moved into their own rooms, and they have scheduled different times to eat. They can’t sit in groups anymore.

Read the full story.

Life-saving dollars to continue providing critical services

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Newhouse, Kansas City’s first and oldest domestic violence shelter, is continuing to provide critical services to survivors in the Kansas City community using virtual technology.

Due to the Coronavirus crisis, limited staff are physically working in Newhouse’s 88-bed facility. But life- saving services continue to be offered using virtual technology that allows therapists, case managers, and counselors to continue providing trauma-informed care that clients need.

“For many of us, home is a safe place. However, there are so many in our community where home isn’t a safe place. Now is more critical than ever to continue providing services that allow clients to heal from past trauma,” says Courtney Thomas, Newhouse President & CEO. “Our priority is to keep staff and residents safe, while ensuring the highest level of programming remains available to some of Kansas City’s most vulnerable populations.

Last year, Missouri shelters had to turn away over 30,000 individuals across the state due to a lack of space and staffing within the shelters. With this lack of space and resources for survivors combined with additional isolation, it is critical that programs like Newhouse’s continue to reach as many individuals and families as possible.

“With the quarantine in place, victims are stuck at home full-time with their abusers. This creates a very challenging predicament where victims are unable to go to a private place to ask for help,” says Courtney Thomas. “We share this invitation with the community to be the voice for survivors and to support the lifesaving services Newhouse provides the community.”

During COVID-19, Newhouse launched a virtual fundraiser to replace their annual luncheon, New Day Lunch, which raises nearly $30,000 in operating support for the shelter. With over 75% of goal raised, these life-saving dollars will provide necessary funds to continue operating. “Unfortunately, domestic violence does not take a break,” Thomas adds. “But neither does Newhouse.”

Donate now to Newhouse’s COVID-19 fund: newhouseshelter.org/donate.

by Kara Lewis // The Pitch

As stay-at-home orders intensify and coronavirus cases in Missouri continue to climb, quarantine hasn’t been easy for anyone. But for those facing domestic violence, the situation presents a unique, all-encompassing terror.

While self-isolating with your immediate household remains the most recommended precaution against coronavirus, isolation also stands out as a common tactic in establishing abusive dynamics. According to the organization loveisrespect, sponsored by The National Domestic Violence Hotline, isolation and exclusion help abusers facilitate a “power and control wheel.” Quarantine only further compounds this cycle.

“At this point, victims are isolated from work, family, friends and others who may be a support system,” explained Courtney Thomas, president and CEO of Kansas City’s Newhouse Shelter. “With the quarantine in place, victims are stuck at home full-time with their abusers. This creates a very challenging predicament where victims are unable to go to a private place to ask for help. It also escalates the probability of abuse should an abuser believe a victim is trying to reach out or escape.”

Read the full news story >> 

As stay-at-home orders in the Kansas City area went into effect this week, domestic violence shelters and advocates made adjustments and braced for change.

Social distancing flipped the lives of thousands on their heads. For victims of domestic violence, however, it has the potential to make a bad situation worse.

Courtney Thomas, CEO of Newhouse Shelter, said the intensity of the calls received have increased.

“It is heartbreaking to imagine these children and individuals —people stuck in an environment filled with constant fear and abuse,” Thomas said.

Thomas said that, in an ideal situation, the shelter would like to place victims in hotels if shelters are full, but additional funding would be needed.

Read the full news article >>

By: Gabriella Pagán // 41 Action News


KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Advocates like Kaitlin Dempsey are the first point of contact that residents have with Newhouse, Kansas City’s first domestic violence shelter.

As a result of the fallout from COVID-19, the shelter’s largest fundraiser, ‘New Day Luncheon’, is now virtual.

Given the situation that caused the event to go online – which includes stay-at-home orders throughout the metro – advocates said it’s even more important they still raise that money.


Read the full news story here >>