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April 4, 2006

Dear Friends,

            April is here and for those of your programming with sexual assault and domestic violence awareness in your areas keep up the good work! Across the nation there will be great things done for the month of April! Think of all the difference that each person who subscribes to this newsletter is making!!          

            I would love for you to send me updates on where you are displaying the silhouettes and other ways you are making a difference and ending domestic homicide! Please email me any stories or press releases that you have! I love to add them to the newsletter!

           I would like to welcome our new newsletter subscribers:







Green River




















































Little River
















San Francisco




Grass Valley


I would also like to welcome and thank the people who are thinking about starting new exhibits in their area or bringing an existing exhibit to the area!






















Arsene Kimungu



















New Mexico

North Dakota






Here are the newest coordinators:

Julie Romaine






We now have an official job description:

The state coordinator keeps track of who in the state have exhibits. Some coordinators have regular correspondence, usually by email, with the groups. They are the contact person for someone who would like to start a new exhibit. They share the shield stories they already have in order to help people not repeat the work that was already done. Some may recruit new SW exhibits as well. Some may coordinate the donating and borrowing of an exhibit for people to use across the state. Some sponsor an event in October for everyone to come to, but others just publicize the events of others. They also keep in touch with us by email or phone to let us know what is happening, keep us up on emerging issues, ask for advice or other things they needed. This may take two to three hours a week in email correspondence. During busier times it may be up to four or five hours.

As you can see we still need many more coordinators! I know that there are people who help and loan exhibits across the state automatically so it would be great to get the information out there for everyone.

I realize that there are people who play this role already. If so then all I need is your contact information so when people in your state need help I can get them to the right place!

 What's Up with Sheila's Shawls?

Let's knit Sheila's Shawls and Paul's Scarves!

Susan in Virginia says she has a knitting group going in domestic violence shelter.

We have only met FIVE times so far, and we are already seeing these amazing and unexpected benefits...

--The women have something POSITIVE in their lives to look forward to

("Are we having group tonight? Huh? Huh? Huh?").

--They have something they can do together.  Some of them will sit in the living room and knit together and chat, instead of watching TV or going out to smoke.

--They've learned a new, healthier technique to cope with stress.

--They get to have fun with me (their case manager/counselor) in a non-structured, non-"work" environment - and that has been a BIG help in getting them to open up to me, feel comfortable with me.

--They trust me more because the get to know me as a human, not just their case mgr/counselor - which means we can get more "work" accomplished. I've noticed that they have been much more willing to come to me and let me help them work towards their goals.

--The group itself is a sneaky support-group-in-disguise - they think they are coming to knit and socialize, and what really ends up happening is that they start talking about their experiences, supporting each other, listening to one another.

--Knitting offers a very tangible sense of accomplishment.

--They gain self-esteem and self confidence ("Hey! Look what I did! I made my first scarf!"   "Wow, I really can do this!"  "This is easier than I thought!")

--They get positive feedback and compliments on their accomplishments

("Wow - I love the colors that you picked for this project!"   "That looks great!"  "You are really coming along!"  "Show me how you did that!")  

IT'S SOOOOOO COOL!!!   I never expected such an outcome!

A report from Leslie in Washington: Little by little people are becoming more aware that Sheila's Shawls is now in WA.   I'm getting donations from people at my knitting group & others contacting me from around the state. Think I have some volunteers to contact shelter programs & knitting groups in Aberdeen & Spokane, which would be great. I feel really good about doing this.

In Minnesota: With March being Women's History Month, I located a silent witness and am setting up a display in my school. There will be a Silent Witness wearing a shawl, a poster board of students knitting and crocheting and flyers about Sheila's Shawls and Paul's Scarves. It just so happens that the silent witness that I have is a 16 year old girl, Bethany Mueller, who was from a local suburb that many of our students come from.   She was killed by her sister's boyfriend. He assaulted 3 women this time that he killed Bethany. Her sister and her sister's friend were also stabbed and taken to the hospital. He was charged with first degree murder. Hopefully this will be meaningful to the students as well as the parents who come in for events in the school.

Yarn stores in Minnesota are responding to Women's History Month (March) and National Crime Victim's Rights Week April 23-29th by having Silent Witness in their store and sharing information about Sheila's Shawls.   Also for Women's History Month Renee Youngberg, National Coordinator Sheila's Shawls and Paul's Scarves was interviewed by Cable Television Host, Judy Skye-Voss. Judy is the host of the channel 6 metro show, Local Images. This show will air twice in the month first on Friday, March 10th and again on Friday, March 24th.

We welcome Myna A.I. Stahman, the Author to Stahman's Shawls and Scarves, as the new Idaho State Coordinator. Myrna was cooperative in giving us a little information about her.

"I don't know how much I have told you about myself.  Because I grew up in Minnesota, the October 2002 plane crash really hit home.    I retired from the practice of law on November 1, 2004, after handling criminal appeals on behalf of the state as a Deputy Attorney General for 24 of the 30 years that I practiced.   For many of those 24 years I was the Chief of the Appellate Unit, so reviewed each and every case that our office handled.  I saw way too many cases that involved domestic violence.   Those are two of the reasons that Sheila's Shawls is a meaningful project for me."

 She is considering designing and publishing a  Faroese-shaped shawl especially for Sheila's Shawls and a Seamen's Scarf I will name Paul's Seamen's scarf.  These patterns I will make available to knitters are no charge via the Internet and through the classes I teach. We welcome her and are excited to have her as a state coordinator.

Domestic Peace and Blessings,

Renee Youngberg

National Coordinator

Sheila' Shawls and Paul's Scarves.



Arizona          a:

From Mary Pat Boyd, Arizona State Coordinator :

Right now I'm going into production with some tee shirts, and that I thought some of the states S.W. programs may be interested.  I've attached a heart/ribbon logo for you to see.  (Keep in mind that the colors can easily be changed to accommodate anyone's needs.   Also, the logo is not entirely perfected yet.)  The heart logo will be placed on the shoulder.  On the front/or back of the tee, your choice, we'll place the copy I Wear My Heart on My Sleeve.    We also put Silent Witness Program, or phrase of choice on the front/back of the tee also.  I estimate the shirts retailing for about 20 but I'll work with the price for any group that is interested or for fundraisers.

Also, is the copy of a graphic that I did for note cards?   Once again, I'll work with the various programs so that they can make money from the cards if they decide to use them.  The cards are sold 6 to a box and are boxed in a stationary box with clear top.

Anyone who is interested can contact me at

(P.S. My stuff is always copyrighted, so I'd appreciate it if you would pass that info on if any interested is shown.)


From Carlleen Cairns:

Wanted to let you know here in Florida our Articles of Incorporation were approved and filed with the state, one step closer to being a full stand alone entity to assist families of the victims. I have commitments from 10 counties thus far who want to hold for the first time a Silent Witness this October, only 50 counties to go, but we are gaining support. Will keep you informed of our presentations and our growth.


From Sherry Clark, Tulsa Sheila's Shawls:

On January 17, in response to Martin Luther King Day of Giving, RSVP and FACES volunteers donated 30 shawls to survivors of domestic violence in counseling at DVIS in Tulsa.  We hope to keep them coming throughout the year so survivors in counseling can each a shawl. 


Lebanon :

From Jika El-Kesserwani

Launching of the Silent Witness project in Lebanon 

      "KAFA, enough violence and exploitation" chose the 8th of March for launching the Silent Witness project in Lebanon. On this date thirty silhouettes were displayed in the UNESCO palace in Beirut. Each Silhouette carried the story of a woman who was killed by the hand of a family member in Lebanon, and the date she was killed. All of the silhouettes were given a name. One of the Silhouettes carried the actual name of the victim; her daughter, who witnessed the crime when she was eight years old, gave her testimony during the event. One of the silhouettes was left blank, to be the story of any woman who has been or will be the victim of family violence in Lebanon.  

      Not all women were killed by their husbands; some were killed by their relatives, like brothers or fathers or even sisters and mothers. In a significant proportion of these crimes the excuse of the offenders was that they had "doubts about her behavior". In this context the slogan for the event was "Because killing women is a shame...", alluding to the term "honor killing", often used to describe this type of crime in the culture of the region. 

      Mrs. Zoya Rouhana, KAFA's Director, explained that the aim of the project is to raise awareness and advocate the adoption of a law on domestic violence in Lebanon. The event was under the patronage of the Minister of Social Affairs, Mrs. Nayla Moawad. The keynote speakers at the event were the most senior women's right's advocate in Lebanon, Mrs. Linda Matar, as well as the judge Iskandar Fayyad, who highlighted the necessity of drafting a law on domestic violence. Women and children survivors of domestic violence shared poems they had written based on their experiences with violence. The poem "I got flowers today", written by Paulette Kully, had been translated into Arabic, put on a large banner and was read by a survivor. 

      A very mixed audience amounting to over 250 people was present at the event. The launching of Silent Witness was well received in national and Arab media. Media interest continues, as KAFA has been approached by several TV and radio channels, as well as newspapers who wish to follow the project. 

      The project continues with the Silhouettes touring around the country. The first exhibit after the UNESCO palace is at Kaslik University. 

      The 8th of March 2006, was also the first anniversary of KAFA. White and purple flowers, the colors in KAFA's logo, were distributed to all participants.

From the CAPEV update:


Congratulations to Allstate Insurance Company  CAEPV's April Member of the Month. Allstate is the nation's largest publicly held personal lines insurer. A Fortune 100 company, with $149 billion in assets, Allstate sells 13 major lines of insurance. Allstate is widely known through the You're In Good Hands With Allstate slogan.  Allstate was founded in 1931 and became a publicly traded company in 1993.

Allstate is also a great employer.  Among its many accolades, in 2006 it was again named a top company for executive women by the National Association of Female Executives (NAFE).  In October 2005, Chicago Magazine named Allstate one of the five top places to work in Chicago, and DiversityInc. named it a "Top 10" company for overall diversity.  In September 2005 it was named one of the 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers by Working Mother Magazine for the 15th time, and in May 2005 it was one of only eight companies named "Best Companies for Women of Color" by Working Mother.  And the list goes on!

Recently, Allstate Insurance Company has also made a major commitment to empower victims of domestic violence.   Recognizing that there is a significant gap in resources for programs designed to assist survivors with the multi-faceted economic challenges that they face, The Allstate Foundation launched SAFE HANDS: The Allstate Network for Empowering Women -- to provide support to victims of domestic violence. Through SAFE HANDS, The Allstate Foundation is committed to targeting long-term resources to ending domestic violence. The Allstate Foundation Domestic Violence Program will provide a comprehensive network of services for domestic violence survivors and advocates, including:

Direct services: Providing programming and funding support through a financial empowerment curriculum and training materials; community volunteerism by Allstate employees, agents and agency staff; and a grant program to allow service providers to address the complex, broad and often immediate range of survivors needs.

Thought leadership : Supporting domestic violence advocates and service providers through national conferences and other events and cutting-edge research. The Allstate Foundation Domestic Violence Program will conduct an annual, national research poll to determine current awareness and perceptions about domestic violence in the United States . The findings of this poll, conducted among a representative sample of adults in the U.S., will be used to continue to build the program and track progress over the coming years.

Public awareness : Creating a national effort to raise public awareness and change societal attitudes about domestic violence. This component of the Program will be phased in beginning in 2006.

The Allstate Foundation is working with the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) Fund to develop and implement its new initiative. NNEDV and its membership of domestic violence coalitions will assist The Allstate Foundation in effecting social change, while providing valuable grassroots support to local service providers. A national Advisory Board provides The Allstate Foundation with strategic oversight and guidance on the Domestic Violence Program.

We are proud to work with such a proactive, compassionate, and leading-edge employer in the fight to make ending partner violence "Everybody's Business"!



Distribution of Stop Violence Against Women Materials to Members of Congress, Press and Washington, DC Community

Lifetime's new brochure, highlighting the message that together, we all will stop violence against women, will be delivered to Congress, policy-makers and press around the country, along with other new Stop Violence Against Women campaign materials.

Time: All day

Location: Capitol

Darkness to Light and National Children's Alliance Congressional Briefing and Lunch

Darkness to Light (D2L), a nonprofit organization working to reduce the incidence of child sexual abuse, and the National Children's Alliance (NCA), a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting a comprehensive response to child victims of abuse, will hold an informative briefing about programs that protect our nation's children.

Time: 12-1PM

Location: TBD


National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV) Breakfast with Members of Congress

Featured speakers will be NCADV and NAESV staff, Members of Congress and Lifetime representative.

Time: 8-10AM

Location: G-50 Dirksen Senate Office Building

  NCADV and National Alliance to End Sexual Violence (NAESV) Advocate Visits with Members of Congress

Time: 10 AM-5 PM             

Location: Capitol Hill

Premiere Screening of New Lifetime Television Version of Searching for Angela Shelton Documentary, (featuring Q&A with Angela Shelton) and NCADV, NAESV and Lifetime Television Reception with Members of Congress

Lifetime Television will screen a new version of the powerful documentary Searching for Angela Shelton, with the filmmaker, for anti-violence advocates, Members of Congress, local and national celebrities, the press and members of the Washington, DC community.  Filmmaker Angela Shelton journeyed across the United States meeting other Angela Sheltons in an effort to survey women in America. She discovered that, like her, 24 out of the 40 Angela Sheltons she spoke to had been raped, beaten or molested. The Angela Sheltons teach the filmmaker about forgiveness, faith and the power of the human spirit.  This documentary will air on Lifetime Television on April 22 at 11 PM ET/PT.  Preceding the screening, and to thank the many advocates and Members of Congress working to address violence against women, the NCADV and the NAESV will host a reception with Lifetime Television.

Time: 5-6:30 PM (Reception); 6:30-8:30 PM (Screening and Q&A)              

Location: Library of Congress: Madison Building, Montpelier Room, 101 Independence Avenue SE



FaithTrust Institute Press Conference on Engaging Religious Leaders in the Violence Against Women Movement

The FaithTrust Institute, along with leaders from religious communities around the country, will declare an unprecedented commitment to ending violence against women in their communities. 

Time: 10-11 AM

Location: The National Press Club, 529 14th Street NW


National Alliance to End Sexual Violence, National Organization of Sisters of Color Ending Sexual Assault, Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape, National Center for Victims of Crime, Texas Alliance Against Sexual Assault, Rape Abuse and Incest National Network, Women's Policy Inc. and Lifetime Television Congressional Briefing on Sexual Assault Services and Federal Funding

Recovery from Trauma:  the hope of the new Sexual Assault Services Program and the Violence Against Women Act of 2005. Panelists include national and local sexual assault experts.

Time: 11AM-12:30 PM                      

Location: 345 Cannon House Office Caucus Room

The Allstate Foundation, the National Network to End Domestic Violence and Lifetime Television Congressional Briefing on Economic Empowerment for Domestic Violence Survivors in Cooperation with the Congressional Caucus on Women's Issues and the Financial and Economic Literacy Caucus

This briefing, for Members of Congress, Congressional staffers and advocates from around the country, will highlight economic issues impacting survivors of domestic violence and innovative programming across the country designed to address their financial empowerment.

Time: 1:30-3:30PM                        

Location:  HC-7


Let Compassion RAINN

A night of cocktails, shopping and hors doeuvres at Kenneth Cole to benefit the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network.  Twenty percent (20%) of the proceeds from this night will go to RAINN (RSVP by March 30 to 1-866-583-8607).

Time: 5-9 PM

Location: 1259 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Georgetown

If you have any questions, please contact Ki Mae Heussner at . 

Survivor Psalm

I have been victimized.
I was in a fight that was
not a fair fight.
I did not ask for the fight.
I lost.
There is no shame in losing
such fights.
I have reached the stage of
survivor and am no longer a
slave of victim status.
I look back with sadness
rather than hate.
I look forward with hope
rather than despair.
I may never forget, but I need
not constantly remember.
I was a victim.
I am a survivor.

© Frank Ochberg, MD & Gift From Within-


Cassie Pritchard


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