WASHINGTON, Nov. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- In an effort to raise awareness, Verizon and D.C. Councilmember Anita Bonds have honored several Washington-area nonprofits working to prevent abuse against youth and adults and announced Verizon Foundation grants to aid in the effort.
"Domestic violence is a serious but preventable crime that affects millions of Americans in every segment of society," said Anthony A. Lewis, Verizon's mid-Atlantic region vice president of government affairs. "While the problem is universal, the solutions are not. Domestic violence survivors face many challenges. We're grateful that our funding will help break this vicious cycle and make a meaningful impact in these survivors' lives forever."
Domestic violence and emotional abuse affect people who are married, unmarried, heterosexual, gay or lesbian, living together, separated or dating. The violence takes many forms and can happen constantly or once in a while.
"We must do everything we can to prevent domestic violence and hold abusers accountable for their actions," said Councilmember Bonds. "This tragedy often spreads from generation to generation, and we must work together to end the tragic cycle of violence through ongoing coordination and collaboration among all segments of the community."
During a recognition ceremony on Wednesday (Nov. 13), Verizon announced nearly $150,000 in foundation grants to the following recipients:
- Ayuda, for its Domestic Violence Survivor Empowerment Program, designed to offer specialized financial literacy workshops enabling survivors of domestic violence to reach their full potential, make healthy financial choices and receive job-readiness training.
- Asian-Pacific Islander Domestic Violence Resource Project, to implement the Survivors Services Program, which provides critical lifesaving, direct services for DV survivors, including individual and group mental health counseling, DV education, DV screening, case management and referrals to health and community services. The program also provides peer support, makes referrals for shelter and social service assistance, and links survivors' children with necessary services.
- Becky Lee's Women Support Fund, to expand its Men of Code program, which teaches young men to become allies and leaders to end violence against women and girls. Through workshops, young men will learn to create positive environments that promote healthy relationships; identify the signs of domestic violence; explore masculinity and the basics of systematic oppression, sexual assault, intimate partner violence, consent, power and control; and learn to help a person in need.
- Dance Institute of Washington, to continue its DV education and prevention program focused on building healthy relationships among diverse teens and young adults. Through weekly workshops, DV expert presenters and trainers will teach teens how to recognize dating violence, access community resources and use strategies for preventing dating violence among peers – at school and in the community. The program also will focus on the impact of technology on dating violence and how participants can use mobile technology to increase awareness about dating violence and become advocates and role models.
- District Alliance for Safe Housing, to implement a domestic violence prevention and services program that will improve the mental health and well-being of DV victims and survivors. The program provides workshops, support groups and one-on-one therapy to assist participants with issues like trauma recovery, addiction and parenting support – all to help survivors recover from abuse and establish safe, stable homes for themselves and their families.
- Latin American Youth Center, to implement a Healthy Relationships program to educate young adults about preventing dating violence, building healthy relationships and serving as peer advocates. Through a series of two-hour workshops, participants will learn about and recognize the warning signs of abusive dating relationships, develop leadership skills, and self-identify or refer their peers to program staff for support services (including survivor accompaniment and safety planning, counseling, support groups, or other services as needed).
- Mary's Center for Maternal & Child Care, to provide needed mental health and support services to DV survivors, including individual and group mental health counseling and health services referrals, and help them increase their understanding of healthy relationships, know how to identify when one is in danger, assess the impact of domestic violence on children and their families, and learn how to access resources.
- Neighborhood Legal Services Program, to implement a domestic violence prevention and safety education program for young adults living in Wards 7 and 8. The program will address strategies to prevent domestic and dating violence among teens and provide education, discussion and access to resources and workshops. Participants will learn how to become advocates in their communities.
- Supporting and Mentoring Youth Advocates and Leaders, for its Women Leadership Institute, which helps young women develop skills and knowledge on domestic/dating violence prevention; learn how to build and promote healthy relationships; and build skills and confidence to help others faced with similar circumstances. Through training, workshops, skill-building exercises, community service and education, and collaboration with community partners, the program raises awareness about DV, helps the young women to become advocates and implement strategies to prevent DV in their communities, and facilitates opportunities to share their knowledge with the broader community.
- Vida Senior Centers, to implement a Domestic Violence/Elder Abuse prevention, information, training and counseling program at the organization's senior day centers. The organization will focus its efforts on domestic violence education and prevention with four key objectives: increase awareness of DV/EA and teach seniors to keep themselves and others from becoming victims; teach staff, caregivers and center participants to identify the signs of DV/EA; provide screening and mental health counseling for victims, accompanied by referrals to additional health services; and serve as a resource for local funders and policy-makers on the cultural differences that can impact successful intervention efforts.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, on average, 24 people per minute are victims of physical violence, rape or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States. This is more than 12 million women and men over the course of a year.
Domestic violence prevention is a priority focus for Verizon. By using its technology, financial resources and partnerships, Verizon is addressing critical social issues. And, through its HopeLine® Phone Recycling Program, the company provides wireless phones and airtime to survivors of domestic violence and cash grants to local shelters and nonprofit organizations that focus on domestic violence prevention, awareness and advocacy.
The Verizon Foundation helps people to live healthy, safe and independent lives by addressing disparities in education, healthcare and sustainability. Since 2000, the Verizon Foundation has invested more than half a billion dollars to improve the communities where Verizon employees work and live. Verizon's employees are generous with their donations and their time, having logged more than 6.8 million hours of service to make a positive difference in their communities. For more information, visit www.verizonfoundation.org.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to consumer, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, with more than 101 million retail connections nationwide. Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America's most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers integrated business solutions to customers in more than 150 countries. A Dow 30 company with nearly $116 billion in 2012 revenues, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of 178,300. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.
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