The McPherson Family YMCA is collecting supplies to help those escaping violence and abuse.

The Community Collection Project, which runs through May 31, will gather non-perishable food items, cleaning supplies and personal hygiene products, as well as gift cards, phone cards and gas cards, to support the Safehope program in McPherson. This Newton-based organization provides advocacy and support to survivors and secondary victims of domestic abuse, sexual violence and stalking.

"They recently opened in McPherson, and one of our members has a connection with them, so we wanted to help out," said Tyler Glidden, senior program director for McPherson YMCA.

Safehope provides a 24-hour help line for support services and crisis intervention. Its primary goal is to address the needs of victims and their children. Often, these people are in need of assistance while they find their footing, and the items the McPherson YMCA collects will provide that aid.

"When they help people out, Safehope might find them a place with a relative or an apartment, but a lot of times they don't have these basic items," Glidden said. "We're collecting these things to donate to Safehope, so they can provide them to the people they help.

Items in need include shampoo, conditioner, body wash, diapers, pull-ups, deodorant, and toothpaste, as well as cleaning supplies. Gift cards to locations that sell these items are also accepted.

Anyone who wants to donate can take donations to the McPherson Family YMCA, 220 N. Walnut St., by May 31.

"It's important to help people out of a bad situation. These are the basic needs everyone has," Glidden said. "We don't want to believe this kind of thing happens in our community, but they do happen, and we can help, and this is one way people can do that."

To learn more about Safehope, including its services and needed items, visit http://www.safehope.net/.