October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

This guest blog was provided by REACH Violence Prevention Education Coordinator ​Elijah Ingraham.

REACH of Macon has been providing comprehensive services to victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking, including male, female, and child victims, for more than thirty years.

REACH provides outreach, intervention, and prevention throughout our service area which includes a 24-hour crisis and text line, safety planning, crisis counseling, court advocacy, medical accompaniment, emergency housing, and educational services that support victims through the entire process of physical, mental, and emotional recovery.

All of REACH’s services are free and confidential.

REACH offers specialized services reflective of the communities we serve including

  • a rural mobile response team that can meet clients in the most rural parts of both counties;
  • a Latino program that ensures all services and materials are available in Spanish;
  • an elder abuse program that provides resources in larger print and specialized training for providers;
  • a disability program that provides provisions for those with special needs through specialized training for staff and adaptive equipment for clients;
  • an emergency animal kennel for victims living in the shelter;
  • and outreach and advocacy to meet the needs of young adults that have experienced violence in the home or who have been primary victims of dating and/or sexual violence.

In addition, REACH teaches Violence Prevention Education within the local school system for students in 5th -9th grades, focusing on healthy relationships and bystander intervention. REACH also assists clients in achieving long-term stability and self-sufficiency through goal planning, educational counseling, employment readiness, and other job/life skills.

This year for Domestic Violence Awareness Month (October) we are pleased to partner with the Macon County Public Library for the #1thing project. Visit the library during this month; check out a book on the topic, and write down your #1thing to add to the campaign.

Healing and change can begin with one person doing just one thing. The #1thing campaign involves people within the community taking a pledge to do one thing to help bring awareness and to take action to bring an end to domestic violence. The pledge involves the understanding that doing or changing one thing can help make a difference within the community and further. Community members can use their voice to stand against victim blaming, to educate others, help end the stigma against survivors. They can also listen to victims without judgment and help them recover.