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October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

by Director of the Gender Resource and Advocacy Center Andrea Doyle Hugmeyer,

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM). This month is devoted to supporting survivors and those who support them including friends, family, advocates and counselors. It also means we focus our attention on understanding how abuse impacts our relationships and communities. We seek deeper learning about how to practice healthy, respectful behaviors with one another and take action to prevent domestic violence. The following events are taking place in the Willamette community this month to honor domestic violence awareness:

The Gender Resource & Advocacy Center’s 4th Annual Open House is on Oct. 4 from 4-6 p.m. in the Montag loft in Salem. Learn about GRAC resources, how you can get involved, decorate T-shirts with the Sexual Assault Response Advocates (SARAs) for the Clothesline Project, design your own pin buttons, visit our art display for Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month and enjoy Bistro cookies.

Wear purple on Oct. 8 to increase awareness of domestic violence, post a picture of you and your friends wearing purple on social media with the hashtag #SECUREwearspurple and tag @secure_wu and @thegrac_wu. This initiative is facilitated by SECURE, a mental health and wellness group for student-athletes at Willamette University.

Join the OneLove workshop hosted by SECURE on Oct. 8 at 5:30 p.m. in the Prothero room in Sparks. This workshop will inform participants about the differences between healthy, unhealthy, and abusive relationships and how best to identify ways to be supportive of one another. RSVP here. 

View the Clothesline Project on display between Smullin and Eaton on campus beginning the second week of October. Messages of support, statements of solidarity and experiences of survivors are all displayed as part of our awareness building during DVAM. This project is led annually by SARAs. 

Make a donation to our local community agency, the Center for Hope and Safety, that supports survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault: The Center for Hope and Safety is accepting both monetary and material donations. You can view their current donation wishlist. You can also drop off your donations at the GRAC or at the Bistro during the month of October. 

The Bistro will be featuring a special cookie for the month of October in honor of DVAM: their lemon lovegood cookie with purple icing. May we remember to “love good” and not harm others in our community.

Attend a Bearcat Domestic Violence Awareness Athletic Event. Athletes will be sporting DVAM-themed shirts and purple ribbons will be provided to spectators. Student representatives from the GRAC, SARAs, the Student Athlete Advisory Committee and Alpha Chi Omega sorority will be tabling at each of the following events:

  • Cross Country - Saturday, 10/2, 9:30 a.m.
  • Volleyball - Friday, 10/8, 7 p.m.
  • Football - Saturday, 10/16, 1 p.m.
  • Women’s Soccer - Saturday, 10/23, 12 p.m.
  • Men’s Soccer - Saturday, 10/23, 2:30 p.m.



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