BILL AND MARY LOUISE KINGSBERY
Women’s Protective Services (WPS) has grown from a three-bedroom home to a 27-bed, 11,000 square foot shelter to their current facility with 204 beds and 45,000 square feet. Mary Louise and Bill Kingsbery have been dedicated to WPS since the late 1970’s. The agency’s mission is to reduce and prevent incidents of family violence by providing a safe haven that promotes an atmosphere of empowerment for women, children and families. They accomplish this mission by providing a shelter, community prevention and training, rehabilitation for violent family members, transitional services and intensive counseling. Their goal is to enable women to become and remain self-sufficient.
The Kingsbery have volunteered and assisted financially since the organization’s inception. Initially, only Mrs. Kingsbery was serving, but her enthusiasm inspired her husband to come and support the mission of WPS also. Both now work to save lives of women and children who are survivors of domestic violence. Because of their financial support and dedication, the new WPS facility has been named Kingsbery Haven.
The Kingsbery have been instrumental in helping to provide most basic needs for the women and children clients, love and security. The Kingsbery also were instrumental in helping WPS to develop their capital campaign list, which allowed WPS to raise the money to build the new center. WPS received a grant funding a portion of the annual salary for a Children’s advocate based on getting a match for that grant, the Kingsbery’s paid for the matching portion. In addition, they decided that the children at the center needed a fish tank in their playroom, so they purchased the tank, the fish and they paid for a maintenance contract.
In addition to working with the clients at the center, the Kingsbery are committed to the staff members. They provide encouragement, support and guidance to them, and even sent the past Executive Director to a spa for a week to improve her personal health. The Kingsbery have also taken a personal interest in the Coordinator of the Children’s Service to empower her to build her skills and expand her knowledge so she can become a leader in advocating for children survivors of domestic violence. She has since been invited to speak at Texas Council on Family Violence Conferences.
WPS is not the only organization served by the Kingsbery. They also volunteer their time with the south Plains Food Bank, Breedlove Dehydration Plant and Second Baptist Church. The Kingsbery’s donated 27 acres of land to the South Plans Food Bank for construction of a dehydration plant. Their gift is now home to 2,500 apple trees that have provided more than 100,000 pounds of fresh nutritious fruit for the hungry. As a result of their generosity, Breedlove is able to provide food banks and international hunger relief organizations with dehydrated vegetables and soup blends to feed the world’s hungry. Breedlove products are included in food boxes distributed by the Food Bank throughout the South Plains as well as food aid for disaster victims throughout the world.