Domestic Violence Awareness & Prevention GFWC Special Program
Domestic Violence Awareness
The goal of the GFWC Signature Program Domestic and Sexual Violence Awareness and Prevention is to increase awareness of and help prevent the widespread occurrence of domestic abuse and violence against women in communities across the nation by working with national domestic violence networks, supporting existing activities, working with various established programs and initiating educational opportunities for club members and local citizens. Program areas of focus: Intimate Partner Abuse Child Abuse Teen Dating Campus Sexual Assault Elder Abuse Violence Against Native American Women Military Sexual Assault Human Trafficking
Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM) evolved from the "Day of Unity" held in October 1981 and conceived by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. The intent was to connect advocates across the nation who were working to end violence against women and their children. The Day of Unity soon became an entire week devoted to a range of activities conducted at the local, state, and national level. The activities conducted were as varied and diverse as the program sponsors but had common themes:
Mourning those who have died because of domestic violence
Celebrating those who have survived
Connecting those who work to end violence
These three themes remain a key focus of DVAM events today. In October 1987, the first Domestic Violence Awareness Month was observed. That same year marks the initiation of the first national domestic violence toll-free hotline. In 1989, the U.S. Congress passed Public Law 101-112 designating October of that year as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Such legislation has passed every year since with NCADV providing key leadership in this effort. Each year, the Day of Unity is celebrated the first Monday of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.