As a Family: Look for opportunities to discuss inappropriate relationships with your children, e.g., news articles, TV shows, movies, and affirm the importance of healthy family relationships. Make volunteering at a local domestic violence crisis center a family activity! Form a local group of committed parents. Contact the FJC to schedule a speaker for your group.
In the Home: Exposure to violence in the home can be a predictor of a child’s violent behavior. It can also lead to behavioral and health problems including depression and anxiety. If you are being abused, so are your children! Contact the Family Violence Prevention Fund at endabuse.org to find out how to break the cycle in your home.
Siblings and Peers: Be a role model for younger siblings, neighborhood children and classmates. Let them know it is never okay to hurt others – with words or physical violence!
Sports: Young men and women look up to their coaches and sports heroes. Speak to them about domestic and sexual violence. Coach them on appropriate behavior off the field too!
Men: Domestic and sexual violence is a men’s issue too. Never hesitate to speak to your male friends and co-workers if you suspect they are acting inappropriately in their relationships. The Verizon Foundation, in partnership with A CALL TO MEN, Joyful Heart Foundation and NO MORE, provides an Action Guide that outlines five simple ways to get involved and a PSA featuring Sportscaster Jim Brown about the importance of speaking up at www.verizonfoundation.org/yourvoicecounts.
For more ways to get involved, contact the Men’s Violence Policy Council at the Knox County Health Dept. (865-215-5061) or go to the Men Can Stop Rape website (www.mencanstoprape.org).