• 66°

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

VALLEY — October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and in observance, the East Alabama Domestic Violence Intervention Center and the Lee County United Way partnered to have a drive-through information booth Tuesday morning in front of Valley Resale.

A steady stream of cars came through to pick up goodie bags and information about resources that are available locally to assist the victims of domestic violence.

“We have a safe house to help victims of domestic violence over a five-county area,” said Crystal Lynch. “We want people to know about our services. We serve Chambers, Lee, Macon, Randolph and Tallapoosa counties.”

Anyone in this area who has been victimized by a domestic violence situation can call the hotline at 1-800-650-6522 or (334) 749-1515 for help.

“It’s not just for women and children,” Lynch said. “Men can be victims of domestic violence as well.”

The Domestic Violence Intervention Center is a 501(c)3 non-profit.

Domestic violence is the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault and/or other abusive behavior as part of a systematic pattern of power and control perpetrated by one intimate partner against another. It includes physical violence, sexual violence, psychological violence and emotional abuse. Though the frequency and severity of domestic violence can vary dramatically, there is one consistent component: one partner always wants to have power and control over the other.

The Domestic Violence Intervention Center offers a wide variety of services to help the victims of domestic violence. They include:

•Case management – Survivors who need focused support to help them on their healing journey can receive assistance in getting basic needs such as housing, employment and child care;

•Court and legal advocacy – The court system can be overwhelming and hard to navigate. The Intervention Center can assist survivors with legal options such as protection from abuse orders, victim’s compensation, court hearings and divorce;

•Child advocacy – Intervention Center advocates can assist parents with information and resources to enroll their child/children in daycare, school and after-school activities. They can also provide educational services and support groups along with activities and parenting classes;

•Therapy – A licensed professional therapist will work with survivors of domestic violence using a variety of therapeutic methods. The therapist will work with the survivor as they process their trauma;

•Project SAIL — Special Assessment Intervention and Liaison, or SAIL, is a program supported by the Alabama Coalition Against Domestic Violence under contract with the Alabama Department of Human Resources (DHR). SAIL offers domestic violence survivors advocacy and support services to obtain long-term self-sufficiency.

The mission of the Domestic Violence Intervention Center is to eliminate the violence being committed upon the victims of domestic abuse committed by an abuser. The Center serves five counties in east Alabama: Chambers, Lee, Macon, Randolph and Tallapoosa counties.