October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and there are several ways that local residents can help combat the problem.
For example, local beer market SturmHaus is hosting an event called Pints for Peace Thursday to raise money for The Partnership for Families, Children and Adults' Family Violence Center.
Another local organization that helps combat violent crime is the Children's Advocacy Center of Hamilton County.
And leaders of that organization are aiming to provide comfort and support to victims of violence through a website called 5,000 Angels.
Officials said they aren't asking for money, names or addresses. But they are working to collect messages of encouragement to children who have been victims of sexual or physical abuse.
"It would help the children to know that there are at least 5,000 Angels who are willing to stay connected to the mission of helping them and kids just like them," according to the project's website.
Click here to leave a message of support.
Domestic vioence is a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one person to gain or keep control over another person.
It can involve physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person, according to the United States Department of Justice.
According to Safe Horizon, a victims’ services agency, one in four women will experience domestic violence during their lifetime.
Although women are more commonly victims of domestic violence, men can also be victims.
And, according to a recent study from the Violence Policy Center, Tennessee ranks sixth in the nation in the rate of women murdered by men with a rate of 1.80 per 100,000 people.
“The sad reality is that women are nearly always murdered by someone they know,” Violence Policy Center Legislative Director Kristen Rand said in a prepared statement. “Already, many elected officials and community leaders are working tirelessly to reduce the toll of domestic violence. Yet despite these efforts, the numbers remain unacceptably high. We need new policies in place from local communities to the federal government to protect women from harm.”
Click here to see the study.
The Young Professionals Association of Chattanooga and Chattanooga Brewing Company are supporting the Pints for Peace event to help victims of domestic violence and their children have access to safe shelter, counseling, job training and educational opportunities.
The Partnership for Families, Children and Adults is a Chattanooga safe haven that provides shelter, counseling and life skills for victims of abuse and their children.
The Violence Center gives immediate shelter to individuals by providing a safe, secure environment. The location of the shelter is confidential.
The center's staff aim to educate the public and work with law enforcement and other organizations on family violence issues.
Last year, the organization's services helped more than 75,000 people in Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama.
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