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Feds fund $950,000 for private sector efforts to combat violence against women

Cong. Uifaatali Amata
Source: Congresswoman Uifaatali Amata's Office


Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Uifaatali Amata is welcoming the announcement of $950,000 in federal funds for programs that seek to identify, assess, and respond to instances of domestic violence and sexual assault. This grant, administered by the US Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women (OVW), is awarded to the American Samoa Legal Aid, Inc. 

The grant is intended to support programs that comprehensively address sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. These programs are expected to implement or expand cooperative projects with law enforcement, provide treatment and counseling, and work with the community to address sexual and domestic violence.

“I am very pleased and welcome wholeheartedly these important funds for our private sector,” Amata said. “Coupled with the grants that our government programs received in the previous weeks, this shows that we are on the right track to effect a community-wide effort to eradicate violence against women in our society.”

“I congratulate American Samoa Legal Aid Chairman Larry Sanitoa, Executive Director Fainu’ulelei Ala’ilima-Utu, and all the hard-working employees of the organization for their work to win this grant. I also thank U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland and OVW Acting Director Allison Randall for their assistance to American Samoa.”


Congresswoman Aumua Amata reports two grants combining for about $1.75 million from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), are both for the American Samoa Department of Health for separate health projects.

One discretionary grant of just under a million dollars at $997,661 is for the Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Homevisiting Grant Program, and due to the local work of Merenaite Liua.

The other grant of $725,687 is also discretionary, and for Health Center Infrastructure Support. This grant reflects the local efforts of Seiuli Elisapeta Ponausuia.

“Thank you to Merenaite Liua and Seiuli Elisapeta Ponausuia, along with everyone else working on these good projects for key services,” Amata said. “Congratulations to Governor Lemanu, Lieutenant Governor Talauega and Director Motusa as they lead our Health Department’s important work.”

Both grants are through an agency of HHS, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).

“Thank you to HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra and HRSA Acting Administrator Diana Espinosa for this discretionary support,” Amata concluded.