New NHA program promotes domestic violence awarenessWritten by Kristen Criswell | | firstname.lastname@example.org
The Neighborhood Health Association (NHA) aims to raise domestic violence awareness through its new year-round Sister Care Series. On Oct. 1, at the start of National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the NHA will host a domestic violence seminar.
“We want to reduce the barriers that people who are being abused have to climb over to get out of the situation,” said Doni Miller, CEO of NHA.
“We hope to bring to the attention of the community the impact domestic violence has on workplace, health care and families, not to mention the impact on the person that is involved with domestic violence,” she said.
Each year, the Sister Care Series will focus on different topics and will be aimed at educating and empowering women, Miller said.
“The Sister Care Series is designed to keep issues that have a negative impact on the empowerment of women in front of the community,” she said. “We’ll focus on issues that keep women from being the best they can be and try to open pathways of communication.”
To kick off the Sister Care Series programs, NHA decided to focus on domestic violence issues.
“There still seems to be a significant reticence to talk and seek help in issues of domestic violence. There’s an increase locally and nationally of the number of people being abused,” Miller said.
In 2009, Lucas County had 1,599 reported domestic violence incidents, according to the Ohio Domestic Violence Network. The number of domestic violence incidents may be even higher; however, since some victims don’t report abuse because they’re afraid, don’t trust the police or have a record themselves.
NHA’s domestic violence symposium will feature a general session on the dynamics of domestic violence as well as domestic violence workshops. Workshops will cover topics, such as traits and characteristics of batterers, treatment options, domestic violence issues for health care providers and legal issues.
Area professionals will lead workshops and share their expertise. Everyone in attendance will also take home a tool kit about domestic violence, which they are encouraged to share it with others and become an advocate against domestic violence, Miller said.
Keynote speaker for the symposium is Rory Kennedy, daughter of Robert F. Kennedy and documentary filmmaker. Kennedy has addressed the issue of domestic violence in some of her work.
Partners in the symposium include Bethany House, Crossroads Family Resource Center, Family Services of Northwest Ohio, Toledo Lucas County Victim Assistance Program, the YWCA Battered Women’s Shelter, among others.
The symposium is from 8:30 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. Oct. 1 at the Holiday Inn French Quarter conference center, 10630 Fremont Pike, Perrysburg. Tickets are $75 a person, or $40 a student. Fees include breakfast, lunch and program materials. A limited number of courtesy registrations are available for those who cannot afford to attend. Registration begins at 7:45 a.m.
NHA provides health care services through its 10 neighborhood clinics in Toledo. NHA plans to host more domestic violence awareness events throughout the coming year.
For more information or to register, visit www.nhaic.org.