Domestic Violence Awareness Month just around the corner

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By Ashley Wilson | Rise Above Violence

Domestic violence touches many, if not most, people’s lives in some form or fashion. 

It affects a victim’s friends and family who care and worry about them. Domestic violence affects the teachers who teach children who are too traumatized, worried or tired to learn because of the chaos at home. It affects employers who rely on victims to be productive, reliable employees, but have more sick days than many of their co-workers due to trauma or control by their batterer. Domestic violence affects health care services or mental health providers who are “treating” a victim’s symptoms, but to whom the victim may not have divulged the true cause of their pain or emotional instability. Domestic violence affects the community as it has potential to grow into a public safety issue with kids becoming more violent because they learn this behavior at home, or the domestic violence escalates to involve neighbors or community members if the incident happens in public.

Every1 Knows Some1

On average, 400 victims of domestic violence come to Rise Above Violence for support each year. Support can look like crisis support, safety planning, emergency safe housing, emotional support, legal advocacy and education, or support for children who were exposed to violence. 

Domestic Violence Awareness Month is a specific time of the year — the month of October — where we work to do strategic outreach and education to the community to raise awareness about the issues of domestic violence facing our community. 

Awareness plus action is what will create change for our community. For community members who want to help in some way, we have a lot of upcoming events; we hope you might plan to join us for one or all of these events.

Today, please join us at the Tennyson Event Center at 5:30 p.m. for our Art Above Violence Gallery preview night, with music from Stephany Bouchier and a cash bar. It will be a great time to view the art, learn more about the event on Oct. 1 and enjoy great music with a glass of wine.

To kick off Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we have the seventh annual Art Above Violence event on Oct. 1 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Tennyson Event Center. We will celebrate the amazing stories of strength and honor the healing of survivors in our community in a music-filled evening.

Also launching on Oct. 1 is the iRISE adventure challenge for those who are hoping to get more active or stay active through the month of October. Register today to learn how to win our amazing grand prize package and challenge yourself to get out and do 30 miles in 30 days.

On Oct. 4, join us at both the Archuleta County Board of County Commissioners and Pagosa Springs Town Council meetings for the proclamation of October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month. We would love to see our community come out and support the proclamations. 

On Oct. 20, our last Coffee Talk of the year will be held at 9 a.m. at the Tennyson Event Center. We will share ideas and information as part of Domestic Violence Awareness Month as well as have coffee and treats for a time to come together for change.

We appreciate the support of all the sponsors and supporters of these events and our generous community. You can find more information by visiting our website, riseaboveviolence.org, or email ashley@riseaboveviolence.

Rise is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that provides 24-hour support and advocacy services for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault or other forms of violence, serving around 400 victims each year. Rise also works to eliminate violence through education for youth and our community. All programs and services are free and confidential, including emergency prevention education and empowerment programs. Visit www.riseaboveviolence.org for more information or call (970) 264-9075 to talk to an advocate today.