An inaugural Domestic Violence Awareness Breakfast will be Wednesday, hosted by the advocacy group Alternatives to Violence at Embassy Suites, 4705 Clydesdale Parkway.

The event will be a fundraiser starting at 7:30 a.m. for the nonprofit, which has a mission of helping victims of domestic and sexual violence escape threatening situations to build better lives.

ATV's goal is to raise $20,000 to continue to maintain its outreach programs, free victim counseling services and safehouse, which opened its eighth and final room this week and is waiting to be filled by victims of violence needing a secure place to stay, ATV executive director Glenda Shayne said.

So far, the lofty fundraising goal has not been met, Shayne said, but only two tickets remain of the 120 originally available, and can be purchased for $39 each by filling out a form at

Additionally, local businesses donated to sponsor tables at the breakfast event. Space for the breakfast was given to ATV free of charge by Embassy Suites, and attendees will have the opportunity to make additional donations at the breakfast.

The fundraiser's master of ceremonies will be Ann Clarke, founder of the Colorado Women of Influence group that recognizes women who have succeeded at high levels in business.

"My role is to make sure it is high energy and everyone has a lot of coffee, and everyone has their checkbooks out and laying down those credit cards," Clarke said.

Wednesday's breakfast will be the first opportunity Clarke and her organization have had to formally partner with ATV, but Clarke said her lifelong mission has always aligned with the goals of ATV.

"At our Women of Vision Gala in the summer, I have no doubt that this year we will have someone from Alternative to Violence as a Woman of Vision," Clarke said.

Prominent members of local governments are expected to attend the breakfast, Shayne said, including Berthoud Mayor Steve Mulvihill and his wife, and Loveland City Council members Leah Johnson and John Fogle.

Displaying an alliance with local governments seemed important to Shayne, which is why she reached out to members of local government.

"They're a part of our community, and everything that we do is for our community," Shayne said. "They have an investment in this and they want us to succeed. We want to show that they are very supportive of us."

Some ceremonies to be held at the breakfast are a performance by the Berthoud High School orchestra, the showing of a short video depicting the cycle of violence prepared by Karen Fournier of Starstream Productions as well as speeches by women who have recovered from periods of violence in their lives.

"The goal is for people to see that women who have gone through a lot of trauma have been able to come out on the other side. Victimization doesn't define them," Shayne said.

In the future, ATV may hold a dinner fundraiser, but for now breakfast felt like a good beginning.

"We thought we would start with a breakfast before moving on to a full-on gala," Shayne said.

Sam Lounsberry: 970-635-3630, and