October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM), a national and statewide effort to honor victims and survivors, bring awareness, and engage communities in the prevention of family violence. Domestic Violence Awareness Month evolved from the “Day of Unity,” first held in October 1981. Throughout the years, this one-day activity grew into an entire week filled with a broad range of events designed to remember family violence fatalities, celebrate survivors, and support the volunteers, staff and communities who help keep families safe. In October 1987, advocates observed the first Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
During DVAM, Texas family violence programs across the state and nation host educational events, forums for dialogue, fundraisers and candlelight vigils to honor victims who lost their lives.
My name is Carolyn Mosley and my life changed forever on March 28, 2003, when my 15-year- old daughter, Trella, was brutally stabbed by her former boyfriend. I channeled my grief into the creation of the Ortralla LeWone Mosley Foundation to become a vehicle to help save other teens and their families from experiencing the unimaginable pain that I lived through. Our mission is to empower teens to choose healthy relationships through education, advocacy and support. We have just developed Preventing Teen Dating Violence and Building Healthy Relationships, a model prevention and awareness curriculum that is available to all public schools across Texas. We want to enable teens to become survivors of, and advocates for, the prevention of teen dating violence and to mobilize the community through social, political and legal action.
TCFV releases Honoring Texas Victims: Family Violence Fatalities during Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The number of fatalities for 2010 is staggering: 142. Last year, six young women under the age of 20 were murdered by their current or former boyfriends. Please take the time to read the stories of each victim and help us make Texas a safer community for all our teens, women and families.
For DVAM, I encourage you to take action! Observe October 14, 2011 Go Purple Day! Wear your purple ribbon throughout the month. Support your local family violence program with a donation, by attending DVAM events, or by volunteering. Help increase awareness in your community by talking to your family, friends, and co-workers about the prevalence of family violence and the need for services for survivors.
Make sure those around us know that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month!
Carolyn Mosely, Executive Director
Ortralla LeWone Mosley Foundation
TCFV Individual Member