YWCA St. Joseph Sponsors “Take Back the Night”

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"Take Back the Night" event honors victims of domestic violence.

Victims not only experience physical harm, they experience ongoing trauma as a result of what has happened to them, which can result in mental health struggles long after the violence has ended.

Today one out of four women and one in seven men are victims of domestic violence. These are people whose idea of “home” is vastly different from those who aren’t subjected to abuse, and it is important to bring awareness to this in the community.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and the YWCA St. Joseph is hosting events to bring awareness to this important cause, including “Take Back the Night,” which recognizes the loss of peace that is often accompanied by a history of violence for victims.

“Each year, the YWCA organizes events that bring the community together to raise awareness about domestic violence,” said Jean Brown, executive director of the YWCA St. Joseph, “and let the victims know there are people on their side, willing to listen and to help.”

Among the biggest events the YWCA hosts is “Take Back the Night,” which is an annual event held to validate the pain victims of domestic violence suffer, but it also offers hope for a future without domestic violence.

“Take Back the Night” will be held at 6 p.m., Oct. 14 at the YWCA in downtown St. Joseph. Jamie Marcum, a domestic violence survivor, will speak to those gathered for the event. Community members are also welcomed to gather on the front steps and hear St. Joseph Mayor Bill McMurray deliver his proclamation for the victims of domestic violence.

“Victims not only experience physical harm,” Brown said, “they experience ongoing trauma as a result of what has happened to them, which can result in mental health struggles long after the violence has ended.”

The YWCA also arms community members to assist victims through advocacy classes, which are held Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:30 to 9 p.m. at the YWCA in October. This gives them the tools they need to volunteer and assist victims of domestic and sexual violence.

About the YWCA St. Joseph:
The YWCA St. Joseph is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women, and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. Embraced by a community that has become intolerant of violence and disparities, the YWCA St Joseph is the anchor institution for improving the lives of women and, in turn, enhancing the future for children in our community. For more information, visit http://ywcasj.org/.

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Dylan Cutitta
YWCA St. Joseph
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