JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO, Texas –
With displays of purple ribbons and buildings lit up in purple, Joint Base San Antonio is showing its support for survivors and victims of domestic abuse in observance of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
On Oct. 19, members and volunteers with the JBSA Violence Prevention Program placed purple ribbons at Flag Plaza at JBSA-Randolph, the Truemper Street bridge and the 37th Training Wing building at JBSA-Lackland and the Walters Street and Brooke Army Medical Center-Interstate 35 gates at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston.
Also, the Taj Mahal at JBSA-Randolph and the Wilford Hall Ambulatory Surgical Center at JBSA-Lackland have been lit up in purple each night since Oct. 1 and will remain so until the end of October.
Marlo Bearden, JBSA-Fort Sam Houston Violence Prevention Program integrator, said the purple ribbons and light displays are a physical reminder to JBSA members of those persons impacted by domestic violence.
“We encourage people to use the ribbons that are being displayed as props for pictures or selfies to share their support for ending domestic violence, to lift those experiencing domestic violence with words of encouragement, and to start those sometimes tough conversations that can help stop abuse and or prevent death,” Bearden said.
There are several Domestic Violence Awareness Month activities and events JBSA members can participate in that benefit programs to prevent domestic violence and help domestic violence survivors:
- The JBSA Violence Prevention Program is holding domestic violence shelter drives at commissaries and exchanges at all JBSA locations. Collection boxes have been set up for JBSA members to donate items for women, children and men who are victims of domestic violence and are in shelters. Necessities that can be donated include soap, toothbrushes, underwear (women, men and children), socks (men, women and children), combs, brushes, tampons, disinfectant spray, disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer. Donated items will be accepted until Oct. 30 and will go to a local shelter.
- There are two contests JBSA members can participate in, the JBSA Violence Prevention Program logo contest and the Domestic Violence Awareness Month poster contest. Submissions for each contest can be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org. The contests run through Oct. 28, with the winners announced Oct. 29.
- The JBSA Violence Prevention Program is hosting a virtual 5K, which runs through Oct. 28. Participants are encouraged to get out and exercise by walking, running, biking or using a treadmill, stair climber or elliptical machine and to share selfies and videos exercising on their social media accounts, as well the JBSA Violence Prevention Program Facebook page and other JBSA social media pages. While exercising, JBSA members are encouraged to wear purple attire in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
In addition, the JBSA Violence Prevention Program and the Family Advocacy Program are offering Scream-Free Marriage classes for couples as well as domestic violence awareness exercises. The Scream-Free Marriage classes emphasize healthy relationships through communication and focus on the signs of unhealthy relationships. The classes will be held in four parts from 2 to 4 p.m. on Oct. 20, 22, 27 and 29 at Arnold Hall at JBSA-Lackland.
The domestic violence awareness exercises give attendees a perspective on this type of interpersonal violence as experienced by a survivor. It gives the participant a deeper understanding of the profound impact domestic violence has on the members of both the JBSA and local community. The 30-minute exercises will be conducted via Zoom at noon, Oct. 21, 23 and 26.
For information on the Scream-Free Marriage classes and the domestic violence awareness exercises, call 210-831-5665.
Any JBSA members who are experiencing domestic abuse or violence in a relationship can seek help from the Family Advocacy Program by calling the program’s 24/7 crisis line at 210-367-1213 to reach a Domestic Abuse Victim Advocate.
Domestic Abuse Victim Advocates help survivors of domestic abuse and violence through safety assessment, safety planning and, if necessary, assisting victims through the process of securing protective orders. These advocates can also provide links to resources of support such as referring survivors of domestic violence and abuse to legal, medical, housing services and any other community services needed.
Other resources JBSA members can turn to if they or someone else they know is experiencing domestic violence or abuse include the National Domestic Violence Hotline, 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE), www.ndvh.org; National Dating Abuse Helpline, 1-866-331-9474, www.loveisrespect.org; National Resource Center on Domestic Violence, 1-800-537-2238, www.nrcdv.org and www.vawnet.org; National Sexual Assault Hotline, 1-800-656-4673 (HOPE),www.rainn.org; and National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma & Mental Health, 1-312-726-7020 ext. 2011, www.nationalcenterdvtraumamh.org.