October 7, 2005
I hope this newsletter greets you well! I am excited to be writing every week for the month of October. The reason it is exciting is because we have so many events and news that it is necessary to write every week. Just think of all the exhibits across the country much less across the world. So many lives are being touched and changed each day and with each awareness program!
Below is an email that I received from Fr. Mike Crisostomo. It shows what a difference everyone makes with this project!
My Name is Fr. Mike Crisostomo, a catholic priest from the island of Guam. My sister, Therese and her daughter Erica died at the hand of her ex-husband and Father, Rudy. Since then I have become very active in the Silent Witness Initiative program on Guam. We currently have 13 witness silhouettes and one to remember the unnamed, or victims whose cases have yet to be determined. On Sep 30 this year, our Judiciary branch of government coordinated the event and candlelight ceremony to honor the victims of family violence. Leaders from the government and community as well as family members attended the event. These Red silhouettes are displayed throughout the year in the malls, churched, government buildings, schools, and other public places. I believe the founders of this initiative have set a courageous goal to rid violence by the year 2010. But we are optimistic, this goal can be achieved because of people who are at the front line working closely with other advocates and creating community partners to join in this effort to bring awareness and active participation to rid violence in the home and family. I thank God for people like you who continue to make a difference, especially for survivors of family and domestic violence. Thank you for all your hard work and commitment to family, women, and children.
Please realize what an amazing job each and every one of you does! This is another story and it was sent to me by Renee Youngberg and shows what a difference can be made in someone's life. Affecting one person's life in a good way is reward enough but the displays and shawls we affect anyone who comes into contact with it!
About 7 years ago my daughter was a victim of her then husband's drunken rages. Through the abuse he took my daughters self worth and honor. She will never be the same. She lies and mistrusts anyone and everyone and is constantly on the run. Other people judge her and think she should be over this by now. Range Womens Advocadacy helped hide her and the baby. What you are doing for these women and children is such a morale booster for the women (sometimes girls). There is so much domestic violence up here in Northern Minnsota. The men get so depressed because of the lay offs and they start to drink and use drugs and the women pay.
I would like to welcome our new newsletter subscribers:
Gidgett Thomas Lancaster, Texas
Melissa Burnett Meadville, PA
Annie Lane Rochester, NY
Rita Barbioni Augusta, ME
Kentrina Broomfield Fredericton , NB
Wanda Adrian Anderson , SC
Catalene Theriot New Iberia, LA
Dorothy Lemmey Chardon, Ohio
Chris Ledman Iowa City, Iowa
Judy DeSisti Kendall, NY
Lorrie Brenneman Naperville, IL
Val Freeman Waterbury, CT
Kathy Parker Baytown, TX
Grace Breshears Ames, IA
Molly Pawsey Tiffin, Ohio
Jo-Ann White Jacksonville, FL
I would also like to welcome and thank the people who are going to start new exhibits in their area or bringing an existing exhibit to the area!
Molly M. Pawsey, France Hall Residence Coordinator at Heidelberg College
Becca Kitchell, Assistant Director of Residential Life at the University of New Haven in CT.
There are a few new things going on in the world of Silent Witnesses. The first is the website! We have changed the format so that anyone can get the cutouts for the silhouettes. All they need to do is go to www.silentwitness.net and click on the box that says Create A Silent Witness Exhibit. This will lead to a questionnaire that I hope everyone fills out about the new exhibit so we can keep track of where they are. Plus I will send those people some helpful hints J If you already have an exhibit but it is changing locations or the person coordinating it you may click on the other form that will update the exhibit information! Once that is done you can get the dimensions from that area in the website with no other hassle.
PLEASE HELP WE NEED COORDINATORS FOR THE FOLLOWING STATES:
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. Please let me know if there are state coordinators and I just do not know or if there isn't if you would like to volunteer!
I would like to thank the people that have taken on the amazing role of state coordinator:
Carlleen Cairns for Flordia
Collette Smith with the Louisiana Violence prevention Alliance for Louisiana
PLEASE SEND ME EVENTS FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AWARENESS MONTH! I love email and phone calls J Please remember I am here to help in any way possible please just ask J
What's Up with Sheila's Shawls?
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Hug a survivor this month – with your arms -- or a shawl ;-)
New State Coordinators: Claudia Duran in Salina, Kansas; Stephanie Whitehead in GA has a new email address: firstname.lastname@example.org; Sherry Clark in Tulsa OK has a new email email@example.com ; ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
New Volunteer Knitters: Lesa Nelson (formerly State Coordinator) in NC;
New Connections: Nell Plucy http://www.threadsofcompassion.bravehost.com where survivors of sexual abuse knit for other victims; LionBrand Charity Connections (see the description we use for such listings below):
Sheila's Shawls and Paul's Scarves is a national project that creates, collects, and distributes hand-knit, crocheted, sewn, or woven shawls and scarves to families and friends of victims of domestic violence, as well as to survivors themselves.
We welcome folks to join our online group who may have an interest in helping this work move forward in ways that work for the individual and the group. We each do what we can to help create and support domestic peace.
We welcome heartfelt donations of time, energy, and effort, Volunteer Knitters, State Coordinators, as well as monetary donations to help cover costs of creating and delivering shawls and scarves to those who can benefit from them. We invite you to join us as we work to create and support domestic peace.
Stories from the Field:
Hello Everyone -
Last Saturday I had a table at Theofest in Wheaton IL. It was a beautiful day, so the event was well attended.
I probably ended up handing out about 50 or so flyers. The owner of a Local Yarn Shop took a handful to put in her shop! The actual bowl of Yarn was also a big draw --- lots of people stopped and squeezed the yarn!
I enjoyed working on my latest Shawl project throughout the day --- I feel this was well blessed my all of the people who attended the event. We have a list of a half a dozen names --- will work later this fall to reconnect with everyone. So I hope this helps to inspire everyone!
Danielle Byron, IL State Coordinator
PS A Yarn Store wants to adopt us! I received a call from the partner of the Yarn Shop owner who I met a couple of weeks ago at Theofest. She and her partner are very interested in sponsoring something for Sheila's Shawls! They would like to be a collection point for our Shawls and perhaps offer a discount for yarn.
Shawl and Scarf Knitting Baskets:
Judy Casserberg has a yarn shop in Knife River MN; and she has a basket in one of the corners of her shop where folks are welcome to sit and knit a bit on a healing shawl she keeps there in process for that purpose. This kind of 'knitting basket' for shawls or scarves is also a great idea for churches and/or health practitioner waiting rooms. You can have a shawl or scarf in progress in the basket, along with a Sheila's Shawls hand-out and simple, clear instructions for how to add a few rows (or whatever) to the work in progress. Community in action! Local public libraries, college libraries, hair salons, waiting rooms, are all good places to check in with to see if they'd like to have this kind of 'community knitting basket' available for folks while they sit and wait, or take time out from a busy day. Try it -- it may work well ;-)
Susan Bourne, VT State Coordinator
Did you know there are 42 yarn stores in Minnesota and you can find them all on the internet? I have contacted all 42 yarns stores and asked them to put a Shawl in Progress in their store, with brochures about Sheila's Shawls and information for the customers to pick up and take so they can make one of their own. Nobody has turned me down. When asked how it starts I do tell them that usually the store will donate the first yarn and needles, also a
PS I also have 30 knitters at the school where I work and Janet Hagberg just made a connection for us to do a shawls project presentation at the community education program in North St. Paul. This will be my first public speaking appearance for Sheila's Shawls.
Renee, what a great idea and one that is working! I will happily take the same community building action here in Oklahoma . You're really taking off now!
Sherry Clark, OK State Coordinator
I've been working on knitting shawls for Sheila's Shawls. I hope to have a supply completed within 2 weeks, at which time, I will be in touch with Renee as to where to ship them.
CC, Volunteer Knitter in Minnesota
Hi, everyone. I asked RSVP Tulsa volunteer knitters and crocheters to make shawls and scarves a couple of weeks ago and - voila! - they've completed 3 scarves and a shawl with more to come. And, sorry to say, we have survivors to present them to - we've had many losses in Tulsa this year. However, on a positive note, I'm on my way to Oklahoma City tomorrow for our State Attorney General's annual domestic violence superconference and will stay for a nighttime ceremony that will light the Capitol dome purple for the next three days. To light the dome any color is a very rare thing for Oklahoma , and to light it purple is something we think we're probably the first state to do. I'll take lots of pictures and share them with you and can't wait to frame them for corporate HR people to put in their offices. It's a visual message that says, "DV Is Against the Law in Oklahoma !"
Sherry Clark, OK State Coordinator for Sheila's Shawls
Faces: Families and Communities Empowered for Safety and
RSVP/DVIS Court Watch, Tulsa, OK
While I was in the process of putting this newsletter together, a pastor from a local church called me about another matter and I asked her if she would be interested in having a shawl knitting basket. She said she had some recollection of talk about knitting for folks among her congregation and suggested I contact the Women's Fellowship. How's that for synchronicity?
Susan Bourne, VT State Coordinator
Here's something adapted from Gaelic Runes we've suggested folks might like to include on a card with some of the shawls and scarves they knit and gift:
Deep peace of the running wave to you.
Deep peace of the flowing air to you.
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you.
Deep peace of the shining stars to you.
Deep peace of the infinite peace to you.
May there be domestic peace in every heart and every home.
Susan Bourne, Co-National Coordinator for Sheila's Shawls
NEWS FROM THE STATES and COUNTRIES:
Oklahoma State is having the exhibit displayed in their Student Union from 8 to 5 everyday next week.
From Susan Fuller:
I sat down to complete our new Silent Witness shields for our workshop this
Sent to me from Renee Youngberg but was a story sent to her:
I wanted to share a Sheila Shawl/Paul Scarf story with you and others who so lovingly make these gifts. Asian Women United of Minnesota invited me to be a speaker at a vigil they held for Sheng Vang, a 21 year old woman who was stabbed to death by her estranged husband when she agreed to meet him to obtain legal documents she needed to get a passport. Sheng¹s mother, Mai
I was also present at a vigil for Mikayla Tester-Olson, 5, who was shot by her father, John Tester, who then turned the gun on himself. Tester was granted unsupervised visitation even though he had been abusive to Mikayla¹s mother and had been jailed four times for violating her order for protection against him. Leigh Ann Olson buried her daughter Mikayla on September 9th,
From CAPEV updates:
· If you are concerned that someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, what should you do?
· If someone shares her painful secret of domestic violence, what should you say?
· If you are a victim of domestic violence, where can you turn?
Seven out of ten domestic violence victims tell someone about the abuse they are experiencing. You can be the person offering support, information and resources. This new CD will help you learn about domestic violence so you'll feel comfortable talking to someone who might be a victim. The CD is not intended to make you an expert, but it will provide you with basic information, tips and resources. The CD is funded by the Avon Foundation and is being developed by the National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence. The CD will be available this fall. For more information in the coming months and to reserve your free copy, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and note in the subject line "CD Inquiry."
The Avon Foundation also continues to make their Speak Out Against Domestic Violence Bracelet available. The small price of $3.00 will raise money that can help save the lives of those trapped in the cycle of domestic violence, and the message you carry on your wrist just may raise the awareness of someone who needs help. Click here to purchase the Speak Out Against Domestic Violence Bracelet.
Central Illinois CAEPV Members and Friends
Illinois State University
On October 24 and 25, Lifetime Television presents its two-part original miniseries, Human Trafficking, starring Mira Sorvino, Donald Sutherland and Robert Carlyle. The program will air on October 24th at 9 PM (Eastern and Pacific), and conclude on October 25th at 9 PM (Eastern and Pacific). Human Trafficking is a tough, uncompromising drama about the brutal realities behind the international trafficking of women and children for sex and the battle to rescue its victims enslaved in America.
Liz Claiborne Inc.
Mary Kay Inc.
The Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas
State Farm Great Lakes Zone
State Farm Insurance Companies (Corporate)
From Lois Herman:
Personal Safety Planning - Victims of Domestic Violence
If you are in a violent relationship, one of the most important steps you can take is to make a safety plan both for home and the workplace. These plans contain simple but critical steps you can take to increase your safety while you deal with the violence you face in your personal life.
o you do not have to keep this a secret.
o ask about your options and what you can do
In case you have to flee, have the following available:
· important papers such as birth certificate, social security cards, insurance information, school and health records, welfare and immigration documents, and divorce or other court documents
· credit cards, back account number and ATM cards
· some money
· extra set of keys
· medication and prescriptions
· phone numbers and addresses for family, friends, doctor, lawyers and community agencies
· clothing and comfort items for you and your children
If you had the perpetrator evicted or are living alone, you may want to:
· install a better security system
· teach children to call the police or family and friends if they are taken
· talk to school and childcare providers about who has permission to pick up the children
· find a lawyer who knows about family violence to talk about custody, visitation and divorce provisions that protect you and your children
If you are leaving your abuser, ask yourself the following questions:
· how and when can you most safely leave? where will you go?
· are you comfortable calling the police if you need them?
· who can you trust to tell you are leaving?
· how will you travel safely to and from work or school to pick up your children?
· what community and legal resources will help you feel safer?
· do you know the number of a local shelter?
· what custody and visitation provisions will keep you and your children safe?
· is a restraining order a viable option?
If you are staying with your abuser, think about:
· what works best to keep you safe in an emergency
· who can you call in a crisis
· whether you would call the police if the violence starts again? can you work out a signal with the children or the neighbors to call the police when you really need help?
· if you need to flee for a short time, where will you go? think through many places where you can go in a crisis.
· if you need to flee your home, know the escape routes in advance.
At work, you may want to:
· save threatening emails or voicemail messages. you can use them to take legal action in the future, if you choose. if you already have a restraining order, the messages can serve as evidence in court that the order was violated.
· park close to the entrance of the building. talk to security, the police, or a manager if you fear an assault at work.
· have your calls screened, transfer harassing calls to security, or remove your name and number from automated phone directories.
· relocate your workspace to a more secure area.
· obtain a restraining order and make sure it is current and on hand at all times. include your workplace in the order. a copy should be provided to; the police, the your supervisor, human resources, the reception area, the legal department, and security.
· provide a picture of the perpetrator to reception areas and/or security.
· identify an emergency contact person should your employer be unable to contact you.
· ask security to escort you to and from your car or public transportation.
· look into alternate hours or work locations.
· review the safety of your childcare arrangements, whether it is on-site childcare at the company or off-site. if you have a restraining order, it can usually be extended to the childcare center.
portions adapted from the newsletter of Women's Advocates, Inc.
Poem kindly sent to WUNRN by Hilkka Pietila
of Finland who is part of WUNRN.
Excerpt from "A Women's Creed", written in the Women's Global Strategies Meeting in New York 1994 by Robin Morgan together with Perdita Huston, Sunetra Puri, Mahnaz Afkhami, Diane Faulkner, Corinne Kumar, Sima Wali, and Paola Melchior and 140 other women from 50 countries.
Women's Vision for a Culture of Peace
Stinchcomb and Booker Suites
"Vision without action is merely a dream.
Action without vision just passes the time.
Vision with action can change the world."
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