October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Submitted article

Throughout the month of October, Services to Aid Families (SAF), a division of Oswego County Opportunities, Inc. (OCO), will be celebrating Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  SAF is the Licensed Domestic Violence Program & Certified Rape Crisis Center of Oswego County. SAF operates the Abuse & Assault Hotline (342-1600), which accepts collect calls within the county.

The National Coalition Against Domestic violence reports that 1 in 3 women will be in an abusive relationship during their lifetime.   The goal of this year’s campaign is to raise the community’s awareness about the issue of domestic violence and what services are available to individuals affected by domestic violence. In an effort to raise awareness, SAF will be hosting a variety of events for the public, throughout the month of October.

SAF believes that a primary instrument in ending domestic violence and raising awareness is education.  For this reason, SAF is offering the following community trainings:

Domestic Violence 101, on 10/8 from 11-1pm

Domestic Violence & Substance Abuse, on 10/13 from 10-12pm

Domestic Violence & the Courts, on 10/17 from 10-12pm

Domestic Violence in the Workplace, on 10/21 from 1-3pm

Teen Dating Violence, on 10/29 from 2-4pm

All trainings are free, open to the public, and will be held at the OCO office located at Midtown Plaza in Oswego.  It is requested that individuals contact SAF’s business line, (342-1544) to pre-register for the trainings, at least 2 days in advance.

To reach children, SAF will be attending story hour at both Annie Porter Ainsworth Memorial Library, in Sandy Creek, on Friday 10/10 at 10:15am, and Oswego Public Library, on Friday 10/24 at 10:30am.  Along with the Story Hours, many Oswego County Libraries will be provided with lists of books pertaining to domestic violence.

Other events that will be going on throughout the month are “Undergarment Drives” at the Wal-Mart in Oswego and Granby.  There will be a drop box at the Oswego Wal-Mart all month and SAF will be present at the Granby Wal-Mart SuperCenter on Saturday 10/25 from 10-2pm.  All donations will be distributed to women and children fleeing domestic violence situations in our Domestic Violence Shelter.

SAF will also be collecting old cell phones, to be distributed to our clients in need.  Cell Phones can be donated at the OCO office in Midtown Plaza or the Lifestyles Center on the SUNY Oswego Campus.

Many local Health Centers & Organizations will have Potty Posters posted in bathrooms and exam rooms.  The Potty Posters will contain statistics and facts about domestic violence and have tear away strips with the Abuse & Assault Hotline number.

SAF will also be raising money to support the Domestic Violence Shelter by selling Purple Ribbon Pin-Up’s in local businesses.  Purple Ribbon Pin-Up’s will be available for a $1 donation, at Wayne’s Drug in Oswego, Eddies Big M in Mexico, Cathy’s Café in Fulton, Nice ‘n’ Easy Shoppe in both Pulaski & Richland and the OCO Office in Midtown Plaza.   There will also be a fundraising event on Monday 10/20 from 5-9 p.m. at the Oswego Pizza Hut.  The event will feature SAF staff as celebrity waitresses and all tips will be donated to the SAF House.

If you or anyone you know if involved in a domestic violence situation, contact the Abuse & Assault Hotline at 342-1600, 24 hours a day 7 days a week for support and information.  For more information about any of the above events, or to pre-register for any of the trainings, contact SAF at 342-1544, Mon-Fri 9 a.m.- 5 p.m.

OCO Inc. is a private, non-profit agency that has been supporting communities throughout Oswego County since 1966.  For more information on OCO visit their web site at www.oco.org.