Mike Markowitz has learned over the years that domestic violence isn't just something that happens somewhere else, to someone else.
"I was made aware of several instances when people that I personally know had to seek help in their past in order to get themselves and their families out of really bad situations," Markowitz told Doylestown Patch on Friday.
"These situations left lasting scars on them and their children. I must say that their past experiences affected me."
When a friend introduced him to the work done by A Woman's Place, the restaurant owner knew he had to do something to help them help others.
So last year, he hosted Hickory Kitchen's first fundraiser, setting aside a portion of the proceeds of sales from that day. In the end, Markowitz was able to donate $500 to the Doylestown-based nonprofit.
This year, he hopes to be able to do even more.
The restaurant on West Court Street, near the Bucks County Courthouse, will donate 20 percent of its sales this Sunday, Dec. 2, to A Woman's Place.
Eat-in and take-out orders both qualify, he said, and the restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The fundraiser is another way Markowitz said he tries to thank his customers.
"As a business owner in Doylestown, I believe it is important to be a contributing member of the community and give back in many ways to the community that supports Hickory Kitchen," he said.
A Woman's Place was founded in 1976, just two years after the first battered women's shelter in the nation opened in St. Paul, Minn. The local entity began as a storefront, drop-in counseling center in Sellersville, with a one-room apartment behind the office where women escaping violence could stay.
Now based out of Doylestown, A Woman's Place is the only nonprofit in Bucks County devoted to empowering women and ending domestic violence. It runs a residential shelter for women and children escaping abuse, as well as a 24-hour hotline, counseling, legal and medical advocacy, and a children’s program.
The hotline can be reached at 800-220-8116; for more information, visit A Woman's Place's website.