February Dedicated to Educating Delawareans About Teen Dating Violence and Prevention
WILMINGTON, DELAWARE- Each February, President Obama and Delaware’s Governor Markell declare this month Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month to bring awareness to this issue and educate young people on the signs of teen dating violence.
1 out of 6 Delaware high school girls reported that their partner has done something on purpose to hurt them, according to the Delaware Youth Risk Behavior Survey. This makes TDVAPM an especially important month for Delawareans in which teens and their families can learn about this prevalent concern.
“Teen dating violence can be any form of physical, sexual, psychological, or emotional violence, as well as stalking. We know that many teens do not share with their loved ones that their partner is being abusive,” says Mariann Kenville-Moore, Interim Executive Director of the Delaware Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
Only 33 percent of teens in violent relationships told anyone about the abuse, according to loveisrespect.org, a national resource for teens.
On February 4, 2015, Governor Markell signed a proclamation declaring February Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month. Speakers at the event included Sam Golder, from Red Clay Consolidated School District; Melinda Dubinski, from the REAL Relationships Program at Turning Point at People’s Place II, Inc.; Kristen Herman from the safe+respectful Program at CHILD Inc; and Gabrielle Coleman, a young woman who is pursuing an education and career in the prevention of domestic violence and sexual assault. REAL Relationships and safe+respectful are two programs dedicated to educating teens on healthy relationships.
Other events this month include a statewide Instagram contest for high school students to demonstrate healthy relationship qualities through Instagram photos.
For more information and contest rules, visit www.safeandrespectful.org. Also, National “Wear Orange 4 Love” Day is on February 10th to help promote respect and healthy relationships.
There are a number of initiatives happening in Delaware, all of which are listed on a calendar of events produced by the Delaware Coalition Against Domestic Violence and posted at www.dcadv.org.
If you are in an abusive relationship, or know someone who is, contact a confidential hotline to learn about all of your options, including shelter, legal assistance, support groups, and more. Hotline staff can help you create a safety plan personalized for your situation.
National teen dating abuse hotline 1-866-331-9474
Text “love is” to 22522
Trevor Project (24 Hour LGBT Youth Hotline) 1-866-488-7386
Live chat online at: www.loveisrespect.org
24 Hour Domestic Violence Hotlines & Shelters in Delaware:
New Castle County (bilingual services available): 302-762-6110
Kent & Sussex Counties: 302-422-8058
302-745-9874 (bilingual hotline)
National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE