October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and this year to commemorate, NAM’s Family Violence Center (FVC) started its 6th Annual “You Are Not Alone” campaign with a Memorial Garden Ceremony on October 1, 2019.
The dedication for the Memorial Garden took place in front of the main NAM Building at 8:30 a.m. The garden is to remind domestic violence victims and survivors that they are not alone in their situation and that there are resources and support available to them.
“Averaging the deaths in the recent years due to domestic violence, Texas has seen an average of 121 women per year who have met this fate,” explained Sheryl Johnson, Director of NAM’s Family Violence Center. “With the Memorial Garden, we will honor these women by placing a purple flag in our Memorial Garden to acknowledge their loss and honor their memory,” said Johnson.
Everyone who attended the dedication picked up a free yellow flag at NAM to sign or put a message of hope on it and placed it in the garden below the purple flags to honor those who have lost their lives and remember anyone they may know who has struggled with domestic violence.
“This Memorial Garden is to remind those that are suffering from domestic violence that they are not alone,” said President/CEO of NAM, Les Cave. “For anyone going through this hardship, we hope that they will reach out for help, and we want them to know that NAM is here for them.”
Throughout October, NAM’s Family Violence Center will be sharing information about domestic abuse by hosting what they are calling “Door Events.”
“Basically, the FVC staff will be standing outside of doors not only in front of NAM but at businesses, hospitals, and other locations throughout the community to make people aware that as a community we can end domestic violence,” explained Johnson. “And maybe, anyone who is suffering from abuse will have the courage to reach out for help before it’s too late.”
Thursday, October 24, is also Wear Purple for Domestic Violence Awareness Day, also known as Purple Thursday. Since 2010, it has been observed the Thursday of the third full week in October. By wearing purple on that day, conversations can be started about domestic violence, with the goal of lessening it and building healthy relationships.
The Family Violence Center is also presenting an Empowerment Conference on Saturday, October 26, 2019, at The Harrell Family Opportunity Center, located behind NAM’s main campus. This is a free event that will offer support and resources. Anyone interested is welcome to attend and listen to guest speakers and take part in a discussion on how our community can bring awareness to stop domestic violence.
If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence please contact the FVC hotline at 281-885-4673.