Did you know that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM)? Not only is it a great reason to put on your boldest purple – outside of the Rockies being in the playoffs – but it gives us all a chance to reflect on the prevalence of relationship violence in our communities and what we can do to change that reality.
Kicking off Domestic Violence Awareness Month 2018, we’re taking a look back at the history of DVAM and previewing what’s in store for this year.
History of DVAM
In October 1981, the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV) organized advocates across America who were working to end the violence impacting countless individuals in every community. This “Day of Unity” sparked a movement at the local, state and national levels that later grew to a week and eventually – in 1987 – an entire month.
“It worked so well throughout the country,” said Rita Smith, Senior Advisor to the NFL and former NCADV Executive Director, “we expanded it to a week and then the entire month to make sure we could get the best impact with our efforts.”
The United States Congress officially designated October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month in 1989 with the passage of Public Law 101-112. Each congress since has passed the same legislative measure every year.
Although DVAM activities are widely diverse and vary greatly across programs, regions and local cultures, they all focus on three primary components – remembering those who died as a result of relationship violence, celebrating those who survived and connecting those working to create a future free from it.
What You Can Do This October
In an effort to highlight the small actions that can lead to great changes, people across the nation will be using the hashtag “#1Thing” to highlight what they are doing to help create a future free from relationship violence in their community.
“The #1Thing message helps individuals and communities to articulate and understand how our collective ‘one things’ can lead to the social transformation we all desire to see,” said Joe Ostrander, Communications Manager for the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence. “Imagine if 7.4 billion individuals each commit to doing one thing – this collective action will definitely create social transformation. Change can start with only #1Thing.”
If you are looking for the #1Thing you can do this October, look no further than Woods Boss Brewing in Denver. Our friendly neighborhood brewers teamed up with Violence Free Colorado to create a unique Belgian black IPA in honor of DVAM. On tap throughout the month, every pint of “Out of the Darkness” that is poured will see a portion of proceeds donated to Violence Free Colorado.
“We are excited to partner with Violence Free Colorado during the month of October and to provide a little support for such a huge cause that affects so many in the community,” said Chad Moore, owner and head of business operations at Woods Boss Brewing. “Out of the Darkness goes on tap October 1 with the hope that it will bring folks together for delicious craft beers, friends and a few laughs knowing each pint is in support of a Violence Free Colorado.”
If you’re not a big beer fan, you can still do #1Thing by making a tax-deductible donation to Violence Free Colorado or check out their community action card with ways you can Stand Up for a brighter future in our state.