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On average, 24 people per minute fall victim to rape, domestic violence, verbal and sexual harassment, or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States. This equals to about 12 million men and women over the course of a year. It is the least recognized human rights abuse in the world.
Survivors of domestic violence face ongoing challenges, and suffer from physical, mental, and emotional abuse. It can take an extended period of time for a survivor to feel safe and mentally stable again. Addressing the pain is only part of the obstacles that survivors face.
It is important to note that survivors are not alone and have access to a variety of resources to assist them with healing. The healing process can help survivors gain inner strength and lessen their fears and anxieties. Around the United States and globally, there are domestic violence support groups that guide survivors on their road to recovery. These support groups understand that the healing process takes time and the effects of this trauma vary from person to person depending on their age, stress, and the frequency of abuse caused.
In the current climate of the #MeToo movement and October being Domestic Violence Awareness Month, it is important that we educate ourselves on domestic violence issues and learn about ways to help. If you know someone or you, yourself, suffer from domestic violence, do not hesitate to contact these domestic violence support groups.
Peace Over Violence
Located in Los Angeles, California, Peace Over Violence is committed to the social service, social change, and social justice of domestic violence. The organization offers programs that include emergency, intervention, prevention, education, and advocacy services. If you are looking for one on one support, POV provides counsel, support, and guidance to transition into a healthier life. In addition, POV teaches teens about healthy relationships, train girls in self-defense, and instruct boys in conflict resolution so that they don't wind up saying any of the things to never say to a survivor of sexual assault and can step in to help women in need of help.
Futures Without Violence
From domestic violence to child abuse and everything in between, Futures Without Violence offers groundbreaking programs, policy development, and public action campaigns that are designed to educate and prevent violence in families and relationships.
In addition, FWV offer services that train doctors, nurses, judges, and even coaches to see the signs of domestic violence and abuse, and how to respond to them. They recognize that it is a civil duty to respond to these situations in the appropriate manner. The organization continues to work with advocates and policy makers to educate the community and to help build healthy relationships.
INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence
Native women and women of color make up a large percentage of domestic violence survivors. INCITE! is a community of radical feminists that put women of color at the forefront. They largely focus on attacks on immigrants’ rights, Indian treaty rights, hate crimes against women, and attacks on women’s reproductive rights.
INCITE! believes that domestic violence needs to be a part of the public discussion and should be a mainstream social service. This organization also acknowledges that survivors need to be tended to, educated, and empowered in order to overcome the stress and anxiety that comes with domestic and sexual violence.
Beginning as an awareness campaign attacking issues in domestic and sexual violence for South Asian women, Manavi has grown into a domestic violence support group that centralizes women’s needs, interests, and healing. Manavi is culturally specific, and offers intervention and advocacy practices with traditional techniques.
As one of the largest South Asian organizations focusing on domestic and sexual violence abuse, they are focused on not only ending violence against women, but also creating a “long-term vision of establishing peaceful communities free from gender-based violence."
No More is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping survivors of all backgrounds, being one of the most diverse support groups in the United States. The symbol itself for No More is unifying, and represents the goal of zero gender-based violence, as well as the desire to reach zero incidences of domestic violence and sexual assault. The organization itself is powered by people who are strong supporters working in the fields of global activism, allied organizations, schools, and local campaigns.
Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN)
Known as the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization, RAINN offers everything from support, information, advice referrals or trained support and also operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline (800.656.HOPE).
This organization is partnered with more than 1,000 local sexual assault service providers and has programs to prevent sexual violence, help survivors, and ensure that perpetrators are brought to justice, supported by companies that donate to them extensively.
As a global activist movement, V-Day’s mission is to end violence against women and girls by promoting creative events to increase awareness, raise money, and assist in helping the surrounding anti-violence organizations. Bringing awareness to this cause is just as important as offering group support. The more people that are knowledgeable about these issues, the more people can help.
Local volunteers and college students are among the many who produce annual events and benefit performances, most notably, The Vagina Monologues and A Memory, A Monologue, A Rant, and A Prayer. The goals of these events it to raise awareness and raise funds for anti-violence groups in surrounding communities. Thousands of these events take place globally, educating millions of people about violence against women and girls.
The Northwest Network
With the slogan, “Building loving communities, ending violence and abuse,” The Northwest Network is made of and for Bi, Trans, Lesbian, and Gay survivors of abuse. They believe that people of all gender and sexual preference should live their lives free of violence and oppression. Their vision is to create a healthy, inclusive, accountable, and loving community to all people globally. Everyone is entitled to basic rights, and they should not be taken away by an intimate partner or individual.
The Northwest Network offers free and confidential support for LGBT survivors, their friends, and their family. The four categories of support are advocacy, services, resources, and connection through classes, workshops, and organizing events.
Equality now is a strong believer in bringing awareness to social change in order to create legal change. Not only does this organization focus on helping domestic violence and sexual abuse survivors, but they are also on the mission to end harmful practices, end sex trafficking, and achieving legal equality. Equality Now documents violence and discrimination against women, and create efforts to end the abuse.
American Bar Association Commission on Domestic and Sexual Violence
Part of the larger issue in domestic violence cases is seeking legal assistance. This Commission was built to increase access to justice for victims and survivors by mobilizing the legal profession. They focus on policy initiatives and training for lawyers who represent victims of domestic and sexual abuse by partnering with the US Department of Justice. Training and events are often held to represent these victims, making this one of the more useful domestic violence support groups available for survivors of domestic violence and educating more people on the laws every woman should be aware of.