Mayor’s Column: Domestic Violence Month

Mayor Michael Mignogna discusses the history of Domestic Violence Awareness month and shares available resources.

In 1989, Congress passed a law designating October as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. First introduced in 1981 as a “Day of Unity” by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, it was created to raise awareness and to connect and unify the millions of affected victims.

Every nine seconds a woman is assaulted by a boyfriend or husband. One in 7 men report violence from an intimate partner. Over 90 percent of victims report knowing their stalkers. Over 10 million children are exposed to domestic abuse in the home and 80 percent of the victims believe their children saw the abuse. One-third of teens abused by a significant other never tell anyone.

Across the country, families and friends of victims have gathered during Domestic Violence Awareness Month to remember and honor their loved ones who have lost their lives at the hands of a person they once loved and trusted. Shelters and local programs raise awareness about the crime of domestic violence in their communities, and local governments recognize our collective efforts to end violence.

Project SARAH. (Stop Abusive Relationships At Home) is a program that works to overcome cultural, legal and religious barriers confronting men, women, and children affected by domestic violence and sexual abuse. Project SARAH aims to help end the cycle of abuse for families in South Jersey, providing compassionate and confidential assistance to women, men and children who have been affected by domestic violence or intimate partner abuse. SARAH offers mental health counseling, case management, legal resource referrals, guidance in finding safe shelter and emergency financial assistance.

A Project SARAH case manager can be contacted by calling 856-424-1333 and asking for Sarah or after hours and for 24-hour assistance call the National Domestic Violence Hotline 800-572-7233. For more information, visit ifcssnj.org/programs-and-services.

**The Voorhees Police Foundation is holding its Fifth Annual Benefit Car Show on Saturday, Oct. 2 from 11 a.m.to 3 p.m. in the rear parking area behind the AMC Cinemas Ritz 16 Plaza. Admission is free. The Voorhees Police Department Foundation is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to enhance public safety services through charitable gifts.

** On Saturday, Oct. 2 the Sustainable Voorhees Solar Tour kicks off at 103 Blue Ridge Rd. Voorhees at 10 a.m. Solar installers will be present along with an Energy Efficiency company. For more information visit, sustainablevorhees@gmail.org.

**The Voorhees Fire Department will host its annual Fire Prevention Awareness Night on Wednesday, Oct. 6, from 7:00p.m. to 9:00p.m. The event will be held at Eastern Regional High School and provides the opportunity to meet local firefighters, tour fire trucks and watch live demonstrations, including fire extinguisher training. There will be giveaways, refreshments
and more. Come out to this great family night and learn about fire prevention. The event is free and sponsored by the Voorhees Citizens Event Foundation. For more information, visit helpdesk@vtfd66.org or call (856) 783- 6630 extension 7503.

** Voorhees Township’s Annual Halloween Festival will be held on Sat., Oct. 30 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at The Voorhees Town Center. Take an old-fashioned hayride or pick a pumpkin from the Voorhees Business Association’s Pumpkin Patch. Candy and refreshments will be plentiful. Activities will include a Halloween Costume Parade, pumpkin painting and decorating, balloon artists, a Halloween themed magic show and face painting. The Voorhees Township Police Department will be providing Halloween safety tips. For more information, visit voorheesnj.com or call 856-882-SHOW.

** The Alicia Rose Victorious Foundation will hold its 19th Annual Virtual Birthday Bash on Friday, Nov. 5 at 6:00 p.m. Held in the comfort of your own home, this event features a brief, dynamic program and includes a Signature Silent Auction Boutique, digital Ad Book, tribute messages and videos. The Foundation furnishes Teen Lounges in hospitals to enhance the quality of life for teens with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses. For donations over $150, a unique “Bash in a Box” will be delivered just in time for you to enjoy! For more information, call (856) 784-0615 or visit info@arvf.org.