Focus on Violence: Garrison initiatives address domestic abuse issues

| October 4, 2014 | 0 Comments
The Empty Place at the Table display remembers lives affected by domestic violence and will be shown at various locations this month. (Photos by Jack Wiers, Public Affairs, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii)

The Empty Place at the Table display remembers lives affected by domestic violence and will be shown at various locations this month. (Photos by Jack Wiers, Public Affairs, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii)

Gabriele Chapman
Social Services Educator, Family Advocacy
Program: Prevention, Education and Outreach
Army Community Service
U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii
SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — Schofield Barracks leaders and community members joined together to honor victims of domestic violence and to challenge each other to prevent domestic violence, during the annual Domestic Violence proclamation-signing event, here, Monday, hosted by the Family Advocacy Program (FAP).

U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii Commander Col. Richard A. Fromm signs a proclamation, Monday, making October Domestic Violence Awareness Month throughout the installation.

U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii Commander Col. Richard A. Fromm signs a proclamation, Monday, making October Domestic Violence Awareness Month throughout the installation.

Garrison Commander Col. Richard A. Fromm signed the proclamation, declaring October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM), emphasizing the Army theme for 2015: relationships should be safe, respectful and positive.

“Domestic violence is a real problem here at U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii,” said Fromm. “We recorded higher spousal abuse rates (here) over the past five years, than compared to the rest of the Army. It is a problem everyone here in this room can fix. We need to get the word out and stop this. If you witness an incident of domestic violence … do the right thing.”

Guests entered the event by passing through a Silent Witness display, a purple runway lined with silhouettes representing known and unknown victims of domestic violence.

A dining table with a lone place setting was arranged on one side of the conference room. The Empty Place at the Table display was created to mourn the loss and also memorialize the lives of women and children killed in acts of domestic violence.

The event, held at the Nehelani, began with a Hawaiian Oli, or chant, followed by an invocation by deputy garrison Chaplain James W. Blount. This was followed by the reading of chilling domestic violence statistics by FAP employees and Soldiers.

Carren Ziegenfuss, victim advocate program coordinator, read a poem entitled “Stopping the War,” written from the perspective of a domestic violence victim finally free from her perpetrator. The poem ended with the following observation: “I’m peaceful. I’ve stopped the war. You can’t hurt me anymore.”

Teens who participated in a healthy relationship workshop created this clothesline display that promotes domestic violence awareness.

Teens who participated in a healthy relationship workshop created this clothesline display that promotes domestic violence awareness.

DVAM is recognized across the nation every October because domestic violence affects men and women, approximately 30 to 60 percent of domestic violence perpetrators also abuse children in the home, and one in four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime.

“There are many causes and conditions that contribute to domestic violence, and it takes a community effort to reduce the risk,” according to the proclamation. “Without every one of us doing our part, our Army is not fully prepared to meet the mission of preventing domestic violence. As long as any Army Soldier or spouse suffers from abuse, we have fallen short of our goals for readiness.”

Focus on relationships
This year’s theme highlights healthy relationships:
Relationships require mutual trust and loyalty in order to feel safe. Feeling physically and emotionally safe in a relationship is crucial. Relationships need to be cultivated and require care to ensure they are healthy and safe.
Relationships require mutual respect. Treating your partner with dignity and respect is fundamental to a healthy relationship. Respect is what allows us to appreciate the best in the people we love.
Relationships should be positive. Encourage each other to be a positive role model for your children. Children learn about relationships by watching the people they know best.

It is everyone’s responsibility to create a positive climate of respect and safety within the Army family.
Prior to the proclamation signing, Soldiers from two units — 74th Company, 303rd Ordnance Battalion, 45th Sustainment Brigade, 8th Theater Sust. Command; and Co. C, 1st Bn., 21st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Inf. Division — received their FAP annual training, a preventative program designed to educate Soldiers about domestic violence and child abuse. Following the training, the units attended the proclamation signing.

October Domestic Violence Awareness events
Zumbathon, 9-11 a.m., Oct. 3, Schofield Barracks Health and Fitness Center
10K Fun Run/Walk, 6:30-8:30 a.m., Oct. 24, SB ACS

Outreach Table/Food Drive
Fort Shafter PX Market, 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Oct. 14
Schofield Commissary, 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Oct. 17

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Category: Community, Community Relations, Leadership

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