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November 4, 2005

Dear Friends,

With domestic violence awareness month it is a time for family members to mourn and remember their beloved sisters, mothers, friends, daughters, and coworkers. I have been getting a lot of stories about what happened to women who have been a victim of domestic violence. Each time my heart goes out to the person and I make a new resolve to do anything I can to help! Together we can stop domestic homicide and get the word out to people! The programs that are being done across the county and world are amazing and inspiring!

I have talked with two amazing women this week that want to let everyone know what they can offer! Julie McKown co-wrote a song called "One Woman's War" to help raise awareness about domestic violence. She offers it as a free download online at http://www.onewomanswar.com Feel free to use it during your exhibits and other programs it is a great song!

Also Mary Pat Boyd created ribbon jewelry mostly for breast cancer awareness but she also has some purple ribbons as well. She has offered to help in any way she can if people are interested! There could be some great opportunities to fundraise with the jewelry. Her website is www.boydsilverworks.com   

I would like to welcome our new newsletter subscribers:

Sherry Oregon

Donna Thomas in Baytown , TX

Julie Miller in Harrisburg , PA

Jody Beesley in B.C. Canada

Moana Ramos in Honolulu , Hawaii

Charlene Kenon in Tallahassee , Fl

Sherry Leighton in Oregon

Stephanie Haarhues in Sumner , WA

Carolyn Warren in Chelsea , MA

Jacqueline Shelburne in Bardstown , KY

Betsy Varland in Douglas, Wy

Angel Music Columbus , Ohio

Kura Simpson in Hamilton , New Zealand

Julie Kasak Martin in DuPage County , Ohio

Anita Harris in Riverside , CA

Carla Pommier in Rayne , LA

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!

Tiki Derrickson in Paducah , Kentucky

Kristina Chroninger in Tacoma , Washington

Daphne O'Hair in Las Cruces , New Mexico

Julie Kasak Martin in DuPage , Illinois

Lisa Mastrangelo in Morristown , New Jersey

Julie Kasak Martin in DuPage county, Ohio  

PLEASE HELP WE NEED COORDINATORS FOR THE FOLLOWING STATES:

Nebraska

Nevada

New Mexico

North Dakota

Ohio

Oregon

Pennsylvania

Tennessee

Utah

Vermont

Washington

Wisconsin

Alabama

Arkansas

Delaware

Georgia

Hawaii

Idaho

Indiana

Iowa

Kansas

Kentucky

Mississippi

Montana

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!

 I would like to thank the people that have taken on the amazing role of state coordinator this week:

Susan Fuller and Wayland Linscott in Maine let me know that they were the previous coordinators and would like to still be but would love any help if anyone else in Maine is interested J

Becky Duncker in North Dakota with Living On

Mary Pat Boyd in Arizona

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 was successful and amazing! Great Job!

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

*********************

 

To date we have donated over 500 shawls across the nation!!

Welcome New State Coordinators:

State Name Organization email address

HI: Hawaii Moana Ramos Warming Families kealoha4you@aol.com

Mailing address City Zip Phone number

922 A Hala Drive Honolulu 96817 (808)222-3820

State Name organization

MN: Minnesota (northern) Judy Casserberg Playing with Yarn

Email Address City zip phone number

judycass@playingwithyarn.com 276 Scenic Hwy 61 Knife River 55609 877-693-2221

New volunteer knitters and crocheters

Sherry B

Ivy

Mary

Vicky G

Thank you and kudos go out to:

Mary S. from Missouri for donating many shawls, scarves and other items for the shelters.

Gigi in Ham Lake , Minnesota for donating 8 cases of knitting machine yarn!!

Baila in Fridley , Minnesota for a case of yarn and knitting needles.

Dee T in Fridley for knitting needles, crochet hooks and hairpin lace loom.

Mary Beth M. in Fridley for a large bag of yarn for shawls and scarves.

National information:

Public Broadcast System has aired the Children's Stories

This powerful documentary chronicles the impact of domestic violence on children. From adult children of abuse to families re-victimized by the court systems to children experiencing the trauma today, the special offers moving and unforgettable profiles of those struggling to put their lives back together. The program also documents the disturbing frequency with which abusers are winning custody of their children in family court cases, and explores why this miscarriage of justice continues to occur. The documentary features interviews with New York Yankees manager Joe Torre, who dealt with domestic violence as a child and in 2003 started the Safe-at-Home Foundation to help educate people about the issue; and Walter Anderson, chairman and CEO of Parade magazine, who recounts the emotional and physical abuse he suffered at the hands of his alcoholic father.

  Please check your local PBS station for air times.

Chicago is not at this time airing this documentary!  Please, take a few minutes and write to the below e-mail addresses and let them know how important this documentary is to you and that it needs to be aired!

Here is the contact Information:

comments@wttw.org

Chicago PBS 773-509-1111

 Your Response is needed!!

PBS has received more than 1,000 emails and hundreds of phone calls from father's rights groups.  I believe the best way to counter whatever effect this will have (like convincing local stations to do local programming offering the "other" point of view) is to have as many people as possible email, write, phone the stations that have aired the program to thank them.  It would be a very powerful way to answer the very nasty critics who are literally assaulting PBS and its' stations.

 Sunday, October 30, 8/7c

"Ginyard Family"

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition builds a new haven for a single mother and her eight children who have overcome tremendous hardship and currently live in a hazardous house. Grammy-winning singing superstar Patti LaBelle performs at a candlelight vigil outside the family's new home.

Minnesota events -Building the Legacy Fundraising Breakfast

Alexandra House will hold the second annual Building the Legacy Fundraising Breakfast on Tuesday, November 15 from 8:00-9:00 a.m. at the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel in Minneapolis .

The one-hour program will be filled with moving stories about our work and mission to end domestic violence.

The Building the Legacy Breakfast is free and open to the public. There is no required minimum or maximum donation; it is our hope that guests will be inspired to want to make a pledge to support Alexandra House programs over the next several years.

The event aims to raise general operating funds to support Alexandra House programs and services, including emergency shelter, legal advocacy, and violence prevention initiatives.

Last year, the Building the Legacy Breakfast raised more than $27,000 in pledges over five years.

If you would like to attend the Building the Legacy Fundraising Breakfast, please contact Dana Moore at (763) 656-1368 or email dmoore@alexandrahouse.org.

Vermont- Shawl Display by Susan Bourne

Here's my little report about the Sheila's Shawls display I put up this weekend at Vermont College in Brattleboro, Vermont: Display: Eight shawls displayed on rods, hanging from hooks on two sides of a room, with six others laid out on tables; the frame with the DV stamps, the Home Sweet Home sign, written explanation of Sheila's Shawls, the list of DV statistics links, and a wingback chair where I sat to knit for a few hours on Saturday. I left the shawl in progress displayed on the chair on Sunday. So the display itself worked pretty well. Unfortunately, the college staff person who was going to include an announcement about the display in our written schedule and who was supposed to announce the shawl display at morning meeting on Saturday forgot to do both; so there were many folks who didn't know the display was up in the Pole Barn.

Few of the people who looked at the display took the time to read what the display was about, its context and purpose, though I did talk with several different folks about it. I'm sure this was a soft and subtle way of bringing this to peoples' attention; and there were several women visibly moved. I can see where Silent

Witness figures would work better to make big, unmistakable messages and statements.

I made a connection with a prison guard who's a fellow student with me at Vermont College (though I didn't know what her job is before we talked at the display), We had a long talk about women at the Women's Correctional Facility in Windsor, VT where she works and where women are allowed to crochet, but not knit.

The guard gave me the name and number of the person to contact at the prison to let them know about Sheila's Shawls, to see if some of the women would like to make shawls for Sheila's Shawls, and to see about the possibility of sponsoring a supervised knitting workshop there. For some reason, prisoners are allowed plastic crochet hooks, but not any kind of knitting needles, in their cells.

Next time -- in May when I plan to put up another display for DV awareness month again -- I'll do more advance prep work to provide info about the display, its context, and how the shawls "work;" but for a first time go, I'd say it went well. And, I'm grateful for the impact and impression the shawls and info did have on many folks.

In peace,

Susan Bourne

Vermont Coordinator

Sheila's Shawls

May there be domestic peace in every home.

Renee Youngberg

Sheila's Shawls and Paul's Scarves

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SheilasShawls

NEWS FROM THE STATES and COUNTRIES:

 Canada :

From Jody Beesley:

We unveiled our witnesses on September 22, 2005 at our Take Back The Night march and rally.  We have 5 witnesses named and the Remember Me silhouette.  We are still waiting for contact with family members of 5 more victims. 

The response from the community has been very good, and we are starting to get requests to take the silhouettes out to speaks about violence against women. 

From Glenda Dean:

We are having our first Silent Witness Project on Nov 4 as November is domestic violence month for us.  We will have pictures and hopefully can send some out to you.  We have appreciated all the info as it has helped immensely. Our event is starting with a drumming group, short comments from the planning committee and a short speech from our Minister of Family Services, who is very committed to this work & our founder, some words from a number of families who have lost a sister, mother, daughter to domestic violence, then a closing and drumming to close.  We are able to provide coffee & light snacks.  We are holding in our legislature building where a number of events such as these take place. Originally we were going to have it outside in our Dec. 6 memorial grove but weather in Winnipeg in Nov can be unpredictable. Our planning committee was formed by the Coalition of Women Resource Centers'/Services in Manitoba of which there are 8.  I am the co-chair of that coalition. 

We have worked very hard at this project but without all the information from you, I don't think we could have done it.  This has been an empowering project to do and we hope to be able to hold it every year.  Our goal is to be able to create a National Silent Witness program in Canada . I wish you success in all the projects in October and hope that we do not have to add names for next year.

Cayman Islands :

From Seema Kapoor:

 As I mentioned in my previous e-mail, Business & Professional Women's Club of Grand Cayman ( Cayman Islands ) is in the process of organizing our Silent Witness March to be held on 18 October.

The march is scheduled to start at 12:30pm from the lawns of the Government Administration Building and end on the steps of the steps of the Legislative Assembly.

Although the planning and organization for this campaign started very late   this year, as most people were and some still are trying to rebuild their lives after the devastating Hurricane Ivan (September 2004), the support that we have gathered and the way our campaign has shaped so far is very promising.

The local television Cayman 27 is dedicating their entire morning show on 18 October to this campaign, in addition to the the live telecast of the march and 5 special reports that they have recorded. We have also received excellent support so far from community and the other local media as well. Public radio station also has agreed to do the live broadcast of the event. Other radio stations and newspapers are also extending their support to our campaign.

As we have to start this campaign from the scratch - new silhouettes have been made - for both display and for the participants to carry. We also have customized T.Shirts done for this event. In addion, we have made and are selling black & Blue colored ribbons, which people can wear  to express their support to this campaign.

 Pennsylvania :

From Twyla Sable:

Today was the March to End Domestic Abuse held by the YWCA and NCJW Pittsburgh Section.  The March and Rally were supported by 150 men and women who marched from the Court House to Market Square .  There was chanting and noise making with a police escort with lights flashing on the cruiser car.  The program was filmed by the PBS Station WQED for a program called ON Q to be aired Monday, October 31 st.  The local press also attended.  Survivors spoke, the CEO of the YWCA Pittsburgh and I spoke to the issue of domestic abuse and violence awareness and the need for tougher laws to protect women and children.  What a success.

Rhode Island :

From Jennifer Stanley:

Here is a picture of some of our Women's Center members (pictured in the back:  Casey Barber and Jen Stanley, seated:  Diana DeQuattro and Danese Nalence) at a Crime Prevention Fair at Roger Williams University held on Thursday, October 6, 2005 .

Later that day our Women's Center members hosted "PlayRights - Interactive Educational Theater" on our campus with two one hour shows on the topics of dating violence and acquaintance rape.

On Tuesday, October 18, we will be participating in our state wide Silent Witness "March To End The Silence" held in Providence , RI .  Later that week, we will have a "Break the Silence" Vigil on our campus sponsored by our Women's Center and PEERs (student educators that work in conjunction with our Counseling Center ).  This powerful vigil incorporates stories, poems, and "introductions" of the Silent Witnesses.  Our Women's Center members and PEERs have been doing this vigil on our campus for about four years now and the event is always very well received by our participants.

  Texas

From Patty Perez:

Good Morning! The Unveiling of Silent Witnesses went very well last week, we received a lot of media coverage and many domestic violence advocates from across Texas were able to attend. I will send you a press kit and other information from the event via snail mail!

We have a family of young children who will be receiving quilts, along with their grandmother who will receive a shawl.  Their loss is recent and the community response has been overwhelming. Their father killed their mother and then himself.  As always, a very tragic reminder of the many families we have yet to reach, as our first lady noted in her remarks last week at the Capitol, there were 115 women who failed to the message of hope and help. We have so much work to do to bring peace to our homes.

 Washington :

From Sonorra Ray:

Our exhibits and vigil was successful; we raised awareness, allowed for healing, and currently working on maintaining more accurate and current statistics for the Navy Region Northwest.  As a result of our exhibit and vigil, several major agencies requested that we (CAPS) make the vigil and exhibit an annual event and have requested to participate.  This has opened the door to combat DV within Naval Base Kitsap, which I believe will spread throughout the military bases around the world.  "One base/post at a time." 

The Executive Commander now request that statistics be maintained for the region, and we are tracking the numbers to see if our Men's/Women's Ending Violence groups are making a difference.

NATIONAL NEWS:

From the CAPEV update:

CAEPV NATIONAL BENCHMARK TELEPHONE SURVEY RESULTS FIND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HAS SIGNIFICANT IMPACT ON AMERICA 'S WORKPLACES

The results are finally here!  In honor of CAEPV's 10th anniversary, we conducted a first-ever national benchmarking telephone survey to discover what the general adult employee population believes about domestic violence as a workplace issue - and how they have been impacted. Among the major findings:

·          44% of employed adults surveyed personally experienced domestic violence's effect in their workplaces

·          21% of respondents (men and women) identified themselves as victims of intimate partner violence

·          64% of victims of domestic violence indicated that their ability to work was affected by the violence

·          33% of victims reported their employer provides no programs or support

·          66% of those surveyed indicated they were not aware of their employer having a workplace domestic violence policy

·          61% of those surveyed believe their employer's "performance and reputation" would "improve if it did a better job addressing the impact of domestic violence, such as through a workplace program"

 From Amy Johanson:

Seeking images of Silent Witness projects across the country!  Video/Action, Inc., a Washington , D.C. non-profit production company, is producing a short video for the Office of Victims of Crime in the U.S. Department of Justice.    The video is about “Strength in Unity” -- individuals and groups working together to promote victims’ rights and services.  We plan to highlight the history and power of the Silent Witness Initiative and would like to include images of displays and marches across the country – particularly images that clearly indicate the location of the event within the image (with a banner, sign or landmark).   We are also interested in strong images that show individuals looking at the silhouettes.  Please contact Amy Johanson at Video/Action with any questions and  if you have images to share:  amy@vaf.org , 202-338-1094 .  Thank you!

Their Remembrance Cry Out From the Grave

Was it just yesterday we saw her, in fact she called me just the night or day before it happened—

You, know she hadn’t been herself in a long time—

Last time I saw her, she seemed as if she had something to say to me—but she didn’t

If only I had listen more or been there for her—

You know, I knew something was going on, but I just couldn’t put my finger on it—

She seemed as if she was so happy, she had a good home, a beautiful child, and her husband was such a good provider.

I wonder how long it had been going on—

Why didn’t she say something to us, we could have helped her.

Oh, my God she was my best friend—

She was my daughter—

She was my mother—

She was my sister—

The things we remember after we have lost someone to domestic violence—is haunting.

The last conversation, what they last had on,

their last words or actions, and what they didn’t say.

We often feel a terrible lost and some how feel somewhat responsible,

because we feel deeply

“that some how it should have been something we could have done.”

Their remembrance cries out from the grave , and we the living are haunted.

Haunted, as to the Whys, and how we could have missed all the signs—or been so blind.

Domestic Violence, is a killer—often a secret, silent Killer.

Sometimes it’s right before our eyes, in our own homes, and we either don’t see the signs or refuse to see them.

Domestic Violence, is like cancer—it kills off---

If not without intervention, often the scars are hidden for days, months, years

—until the final stages and often it is then too late—for death usually follows.

Their remembrance —even if we didn’t know them personally—

is like an emptiness or a “problem we can’t figure out.”

It’s a feeling we can’t shake—

because it appears to be so senseless—and the Whys continue.

If their remembrances are calling out to you, then you can answer by becoming a better listener, questioning those things that don’t seem quite right, volunteering hours at Refuge House where you can provide counseling or support to those struggling through this horror.

Their Remembrance will always cry out from the grave

because their lives were short-lived. Perhaps we can have a part in saving others from the grave by securing their life now and providing answers to some of the

WHYs that some how haunt us after this killer has claimed

another precious life.

Written by Charlene Kenon

 

Sincerely, Cassie Pritchard

Cassie.pritchard@gmail.com

(405)744-1113

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