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UP CLOSE: ‘Passionate Wings’ Shop Offers Essential Items To Domestic Violence Victims

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – A woman passionate about helping women to flee domestic violence opens up a unique operation – a one stop shop for essential items for these women to rebuilt their lives.

The facility is in one of the medical buildings of the Salt Lake Regional Medical Center at the corner of 1000 E. South Temple Street.

It has all the clothing, shoes, purses and make up a woman could desire. But these items are not for sale – they are free. Free to those women who are victims of abuse.

Martha Garcia calls it Passionate Wings – a non-profit organization that helps women who have fled an abusive relationship get the much needed supplies they left behind.

“When these ladies are leaving their abuser they are not thinking about their purse, their makeup, clothing, they just want to grab their kids and run out that door,” said Garcia to KSL’s Dan Rascon.

That’s exactly what Amanda Gafford ended up doing.  She was in a very abusive relationship at one time.

“I was getting beat up almost daily,” said Gafford. “I am still fearful to go to sleep at night.”

She says a place like this is a life saver for those women in her situation.

“This allows you to get back on your feet so you have clothes to get a job. You have clothes you can go and feel like a beautiful woman.”

Martha first opened up Passionate Wings in the garage of her home. But soon she ran out of space and was in desperate need of a new place to move into.

That’s when Stacey Youlios saw her Facebook post and got involved. She’s the director of the education department at the Salt Lake Regional Medical Center.

“I thought what she was doing was awesome,” said Youlios. “I realize the space just down from my office was vacant. We asked [management] and they were thrilled and here we are.”

“I am so proud of how it turned out,” said Garcia who herself is not a victim of domestic violence. She says she just has a deep passion for wanting to help women fleeing abusive situations. But this is just the beginning of what she wants to accomplish.

This is my passion, this is my purpose in life. I know I was meant to be here to do this,” she said. Passionate wings is just a thumb tack of what I want to do.”

Garcia hopes to one day open up a facility where victims of abuse can get a variety of services including help with resumes and education.

For information about the facility and how to get in touch with Garcia go to www.passionatewings.org or call 801-244-7856.

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