Monday, October 1, 2012

Just Cause: Domestic Violence Awareness

This is the second month of the Just Cause Blog Project. Just Cause is a monthly-link-up encouraging Bloggers to 'Blog Good' as well as 'Do Good'.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

Statistics show that one in every four women will be a victim of domestic violence in her lifetime. Many will never talk about it because 'it's a family matter'. Those who do are often faced with skepticism and ridicule from those around them.

Leaving an abusive relationship is often more dangerous than staying, and sensing that danger, most women are afraid to leave. National Surveys have shown that most women will leave an abusive home seven times before leaving for good. In many situations an abuser controls the money in the household, and uses children as a ploy to convince the victim to stay.

Intimate Partner Violence accounts for a large percentage of homicides in our nation. Studies report that anywhere from 30-50% of homicides are a result of intimate partner violence, and in 70-80% of those cases there was prior domestic violence.

Domestic Violence is not limited to women. Each year the numbers of female abusers increase.

So what can we do?

Educate yourself. If you have a friend or acquaintance that you believe to be in a violent relationship, reach out to them in a safe environment. Be prepared to give them numbers for the local crisis hotline. There are shelters all over the country for women and children fleeing abusive situations.

Be a part of the solution. Domestic Violence Centers all over the country need volunteers! Most have an extensive training program to train you on how to answer crisis calls and make sure that individuals seeking help know their options and have access to the resources needed to get out.

Help out with Health Fairs and Informational Booths! Even if you don't feel like you can man a crisis line there are so many different volunteer need within these agencies.

Organize a drive. All shelters are in need of items that you can collect. The needs may vary from organization to organization, contact your local Domestic Violence Shelter to see what they need and organize a drive to help out!

Sponsor a Family at Christmas. Christmas can be a particularly difficult time for the families fleeing abusive situations. Christmas is fast approaching and Agencies will soon be organizing Christmas sponsors for shelter families. You can contact your local domestic violence agency to find out what you can do.

Visit the State Coalition List on the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence's Website. From there you can find your state's Coalition and find the Agency in your area.

Have you been a part of the solution? Tell us about it, and Link-Up with Just Cause.

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