Raising Awareness: Woman Abuse Prevention Month
November 13, 2021

Week of Week of November 13 – November 17, 2021

The month of November marks Woman Abuse Prevention Month, which presents an opportunity to raise awareness about violence against women and its prevention. Dufferin-Caledon’s own Family Transition Place (FTP), together with the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Health Unit, Headwaters Health Care Centre, Dufferin-Child & Family Services, Early Years Centre-Dufferin, and the Dufferin Parent Support Network have all partnered to focus their efforts this year, to raise awareness of the impact that woman abuse has on children. I would like to use this week’s journal to highlight what these organizations have done to raise awareness to this all-too-common problem.

Every year, hundreds of millions of children are exposed to domestic violence at home, which has a significant impact on the lives of these children and their futures. These children not only see one parent violently assaulting the other, but they often hear the distressing sounds of violence, or may also be aware of the unmistakable signs of it. Exposure to these types of abuse poses significant risks to the child’s physical, emotional, and social development. Research has shown that children who witness violence and abuse at home are more likely to display physically aggressive acts of bullying than their peers and are at a greater risk for depression and anxiety. Several studies have also revealed that children who witness domestic violence are more likely to be affected by violence as adults – either as victims or perpetrators.

Children who are exposed to violence in the home are often the silent victims and are denied their right to a safe and stable home environment. They suffer silently and have little support. These children require trusted adults to confide in, as well as services to help them cope with the violence they have experienced.

Family Transition Place, along with its partners, is tackling this important issue by raising awareness in our community. On November 1st, 2006, FTP hosted the Woman Abuse Prevention Month Proclamation Signing and Campaign Launch of “Violence has no place in a child’s life,” in Orangeville. The launch included guest speakers, as well as a presentation of “Strength in Collaboration: A Protocol for the Dufferin/Caledon Domestic Assault Review Team.” In addition to the launch, FTP and its partners have raised awareness through newspaper advertising, bus signs, workshops, radio announcements, posters, brochures, and screen ads.

I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank and congratulate these prominent community organizations for coming together to raise awareness of the impact that woman abuse has on children. This campaign is significant and I wish it much success. The work performed by FTP and its partners is only a starting point. We all must do our part to increase public education and awareness. A great deal can be changed by bringing this problem to our community’s attention. Our message must be that domestic violence is damaging to everyone, especially children, and that it can be stopped. If there is a strong commitment to these principles, we can and must provide children with a brighter and more peaceful future.

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