Sadly, we see so many women who are struggling with the plaque that is domestic violence and Armed Women of America, Inc. wants to do something about it.
Below is information on how you as a chapter can impact the women in your communities. These activities are not required and you are not obligated to participate in these efforts as I know how hard you work for your chapter.
SEE DETAILS BELOW
Armed Women of America SHOOTING CHAPTERS NATIONAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AWARENESS MONTH (DVAM)
PUBLIC AWARENESS CAMPAIGN
SUGGESTED ACTIVITIES LIST
Armed Women of America has made domestic violence awareness and prevention a priority nationally for our organization. In each of your communities you should have at least one of the following types of agencies:
a) Counseling agencies.
b) Domestic violence victims’ safe houses
c) Victims crisis intervention facilities – where the abused, particularly children, are taken for physical exams, legal interviews, law enforcement interviews & collection of evidence, physical exams and psychological counseling immediately following abuse.
Find out which types and how many of these agencies exist in your community. Contact them and find out if they have planned any of the following activities already, or if you can partner with them, or just let them know you have selected an activity to raise funds for them.
WARNING / DISCLAIMER
Please note that you will need to have an open and honest discussion with your local agency about Armed Women of America and our mission including firearms vis-à-vis domestic violence. Some of these agencies will welcome Armed Women of America with open arms. Some of these agencies want nothing to do with any organization that teaches firearms safety OR any kind of self defense. You will have to be prepared for rejection but remain cautiously optimistic that they will accept any assistance you offer. If they refuse your offer to help, select one of the activities that does not require direct involvement with any agency – noted by a -.
We are asking that every Armed Women of America chapter participate in AT LEAST ONE of the following activities during the month of October to highlight domestic violence awareness month:
1) TAKE Armed Women of America DVAM SELFIES –
On each day of the month, ask members to wear your local chapter tshirt or just a purple shirt, and take a selfie with a note saying “Armed Women of America (your chapter name) SUPPORTS DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AWARENESS MONTH” and post 1 or 2 chapter member photos each day on your public FB page.
2) Armed Women of America PUBLIC FB PAGE DVAM STATS –
Post DVAM stats every day publicly. Your state may have a list. This one from Arizona is a good start. Post one or 2 of these every day on your public page. https://www.azdhs.gov/phs/owch/women/domestic-violence/
3) Armed Women of America PUBLIC FB PAGE HOTLINE INFO –
Post links to your local domestic violence counseling and safehouse agencies with information to victims hotline phone numbers.
4) ORGANIZE A “LIGHT IN THE WINDOW” CAMPAIGN –
Do a public relations campaign with your local newspaper and television and radio media, asking the public to participate in the Light in the Window campaign, placing a purple light in a window for the month of October to highlight DVAM. Read this https://www.nrcdv.org/dvam/themes/dvap/PDF/LightinWindow.pdf
5) FIND OUT WHAT YOUR LOCAL AGENCIES NEED & COLLECT ITEMS
Contact your local agencies and find out what they need. Collect supplies for your local agency whether socks, underwear, bedding, toys, diapers, and/or snack and deliver those as a group. Media relations: Take a group photo and send that to your local newspaper.
6) PARTICIPATE IN EXISTING PLANNED FUNDRAISERS
Find out what fundraisers your local agencies already have planned for October, or throughout the year, and get involved.
7) CHAPTER T-SHIRTS FUNDRAISER.
Have all the profits from your chapter t-shirt sales for a specific period of time donated to a local domestic violence agency.
OR Have a t-shirt design contest by your members to create a special chapter t-shirt highlighting domestic violence and Armed Women of America’s involvement in empowering women in your community. Make this an annual t-shirt contest and fundraiser through TeeSpring can all be donated to your local safehouse or domestic violence counseling agency. Media relations: Once funds are collected take a group photo with your chapter and the agency showing handing over a large check.
8) OCTOBER Armed Women of America MEETING DVAM THEME
a. For your October monthly Armed Women of America meeting invite a guest speaker from one of your local agencies to come speak about domestic violence, the services provided in your community, and ways your chapter can help.
b. Invite a special women’s self defense instructor for your monthly meeting. If she charges you will either have to pay her/him directly or have Marti set up as a special event. Depending on the cost you could add onto the fee and raise those funds to donate to the safehouse. OR, ask her/him if s/he would be willing to offer a free class at your local safehouse. If you have a member who teaches self defense, ask her if she would be willing to teach a free self defense class to the safehouse victims.
c. During your October meeting (or September if you meet late in the month) have members all buy and bring purple ribbon, safety pins, and a white craft pen. Have them write Armed Women of America on the ribbons and make a Armed Women of America DVAM ribbon (get more creative than I’m explaining here, have your crafty members come up with something).
9) OCTOBER Armed Women of America DVAM SPECIAL CLASSES
a. Ask your local safehouse if you can do a program for their clients/residents about the levels of awareness and do a craft bead project with the victims (like the safety beads Carrie sells on Armed Women of America web site). Have members donate the materials and help teach the class to adults and children victims.
b. Or if you or one of your members is certified to teach RTBAV offer a free class to your local safehouse victims.
10) SPONSOR A ROOM AT YOUR LOCAL SAFEHOUSE
Find out if your chapter can sponsor a room and paint and decorate it at your local safehouse. Armed Women of America Yuma raised $1240 for our local safehouse. They allow sponsors for $600 to buy bedding and paint 1 room. Do activity # 7 and see if the safehouse will allow you to buy purple bedding and paint a room purple in your local safehouse.
11) VISIT YOUR HUMANE SOCIETY
Advocates for domestic violence victims have learned that the abuser will use pets against the victims. Contact your local safehouse and ask your members to participate with victims by volunteering to walk animals at your local humane society. This event is typically held the 1st Saturday of the month in October around the country. Invite a speaker from your humane society to do a presentation about pet safety to the victims at a local safehouse. Read this brochure https://alliephillips.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/Safety-Planning-Brochure.pdf
12) ORGANIZE A DVAM FLASHMOB –
Plan a flashmob with your local agencies and members. Read this. https://www.nrcdv.org/dvam/themes/dvap/PDF/FlashMob.pdf
13) ORGANIZE A CLOTHESLINE PROJECT –
14) STATE COALITION AGAINST DV DINNER
Research to see if your state has an official “Coalition to End Sexual & Domestic Violence” or a similar organization. Typically these organizations hold annual awards dinners. Find out when the one in your state is and try to get a group of 10 members to purchase a table and attend together to make Armed Women of America’s presence known in your state as an advocate against domestic violence. If your city or state does NOT have an agency like this, coordinate with your local agencies to create a NEW event in your community or state to highlight and honor the staff at these agencies. Be the leader to start a new event. Some of these agencies may be anti-gun so again approach cautiously when contacting them or attending the event.
15) SILENT WITNESS EXHIBIT –
Read this. https://www.silentwitness.net/
Work with your local agencies, churches, local schools, colleges, your host range, anyone willing to allow an exhibit to be set up. In most of these I have seen the cutouts are red….MAKE THEM PURPLE instead.
16) ORGANIZE A BRIDES MARCH –
in your community. Read this. https://www.bridesmarch.com/mainpage.html
17) ORGANIZE A CELLPHONE DRIVE
18) HONOR “DENIM DAY” –
Denim Day is an international protest responding to the Italian Supreme Court’s overruling of a rape conviction in 1999. An Italian woman was raped, and when the case went to trial, the jury found her assailant guilty. The Supreme Court then overturned the ruling, saying that jeans are too difficult to remove and the assailant could not have done so without the victim’s help. To honor Denim Day, people are encouraged to wear jeans to work or school in order to promote awareness. Your organization can also print stickers or buttons with Denim Day slogans on them, to encourage people to ask, “What is Denim Day?” To make this event successful, effective promotion is key. Publicize this event to as many businesses and schools as possible. Information about sexual assault should be sent out with the information about Denim Day. Peace Over Violence (formerly the Los Angeles Commission on Assaults Against Women), sponsors a Denim Day in LA campaign with related resources. For more, visit www.denimdayinfo.org.
19) PURPLE PURSE CHALLENGE
Participate in the AllState Foundation’s Purple Purse fundraising campaign. Domestic Abuse counseling agencies around the country compete against one another to raise the most money. Armed Women of America would get involved by forming individual teams under one of our local agencies and then help them raise money as part of this challenge. For more information see https://purplepurse.com/get-the-facts/about-taf-purple-purse/why-purple-purse and https://www.crowdrise.com/purplepursechallenge
20) SAFETY DAY – WOMENS EXPO
Organize an entire women’s safety weekend fundraiser. Contact self defense instructors, women’s safety products vendors, etc. Hold classes all weekend including RTBAV, self defense classes, resume writing classes, a job fair, etc. anything that would help domestic violence victims. Charge admission, create a special event fundraiser with Marti, proceeds benefit Armed Women of America nationally and your local DV agencies.SPECIAL HOLIDAY EVENTS:
VALENTINE’S DAY – call local florists and ask if they will donate single roses or other floral arrangements to your local safehouse. OR ask members if they will donate funds to purchase flowers (set up a fundraiser through Marti as a Special Event).
MOTHER’S DAY – Contact your local safehouse and plan a special event for Mother’s Day for their victims. This could be again getting flowers donated by the local florists and/or your members, having members write Mother’s Day cards for the safehouse victims, plan a potluck lunch with the safehouse and have members cook and bring food to the safehouse the weekend of Mother’s Day (day before or weekend before even). The Yuma Arizona chapter collected money from the members who wanted to participate and bought chocolate covered strawberries and roses and hand delivered them to the women at the safehouse on Mother’s Day. One member also gave chair massages to the residents. Make this an annual event.