Hello and Good Morning everyone! So last Sunday I challenged each of you to stand strong against sexual violence in your community. How did it feel? What was the first step you made? Were you able to make that step? I mean, it doesn’t have to be a big step…it could be something like reading this blog regularly and spreading the word about it. You could decide to hand out flyers, volunteer at your local agency or even set up an appointment with your local legislator to talk about how sexual violence impacts your community and what you want to happen to stop it! In Virgina, elections are coming up! LET YOUR OPINIONS BE KNOWN!!
So let’s see, I was out of work this week for two conferences in Richmond. One on parenting and the other was A Leadership Development Conference titled, “Breaking the Barriers, Breaking the Silence: A New Dimension” put on by the Women of Color Caucus. It was an excellent conference.
The mission of the Women of Color Caucus, is to encourage and support women of color in professional capacities and/or survivors of sexual and domestic violence in Virgina to vocalize, mobilize and promote civil and human rights, heightened mental awareness and spiritual enlightenment. The WOCC was formed to improve response to and inclusion of populations traditionally underserved by programs and underrepresented at political tables, and affected by cultural aspects of sexual and domestic violence.
Not only was I able to network with other Women of Color throughout Virginia, I was able to get valuable skills and resources that will allow me to improve how I work with my clients. The conference offered workshops such as Creating and Sustaining a Pipeline of Women of Color Leadership in the Anti-Sexual Assault Movement, “The Latino Journey: Understanding Domestic Violence from a Cultural Perspective”, Moving Ahead through Financial Management, “Parenting after the Exposure to Domestic Violence”, “We Are Our Sister’s Keeper” The Impact of Intimate Partner Violence Homicide on African-American Women and Caucus Development. The conference also highlighted workshops specific to the Latino American community. The conference ended with a workshop, Visioning into the Future, giving attendees the oppotunity to imagine the future and how they can change tomorrow starting today. The workshop description states, ” imagining what is possible can be powerful-we cannot create what we cannot imagine.” What a great way to end the conference. All of the speakers did an excellent job of presenting and informing the attendees of new and dynamic information.
Get involved! Understanding how sexual violence impacts your local community is critical but don’t stop there! Ask questions, dig deeper! How does it affect your region whether rural or urban, how about age, teens experience it but so do the elderly! Looking at each population such as immigrants and refugees is also critical. All I am saying is take time and figure out how you want to impact sexual violence where you live! It doesn’t matter what you do! Just do something! In my blog I have touched on one resource specific for Women of Color in the community. We can explore others… if you know of something in your region, share it! It may change someone elses life forever!!!
If you would like to get more information on this on the WOCC, please visit their website http://www.womenofcolorcaucus.webs.com/