From HER

The Sentinel-Record - HER - Hot Springs - - Contents - Lara Far­rar, Ed­i­tor

This is­sue of HER is de­voted to do­mes­tic abuse. Oc­to­ber is Na­tional Do­mes­tic Vi­o­lence Aware­ness Month, and there are lots of pos­i­tive things hap­pen­ing in our com­mu­nity to try to ad­dress this very se­ri­ous is­sue, which is reach­ing epi­demic lev­els in Arkansas and around the United States. Later in Oc­to­ber, Na­tional Park Col­lege is host­ing a con­fer­ence cen­tered on do­mes­tic abuse as well as the Clothes­line Project, which will dis­play t-shirts that com­mem­o­rate vic­tims who have lost their lives to do­mes­tic vi­o­lence in our state. The Gar­land County Do­mes­tic Vi­o­lence Task Force meets monthly to strate­gize on ways to help more peo­ple trapped in this these ter­ri­ble sit­u­a­tions. Most re­cently, Oua­chita Chil­dren’s Cen­ter learned it re­ceived a pretty sub­stan­tial grant to open the city’s first ded­i­cated do­mes­tic abuse shel­ter for women and chil­dren. This is all en­cour­ag­ing. But more still needs to be done. Do­mes­tic abuse is an is­sue that hits very close to home for me. I am a survivor of it. Emo­tional, psy­cho­log­i­cal, fi­nan­cial, and, even­tu­ally, abuse that turned phys­i­cal nearly de­stroyed my life. In fact, the re­al­ity is that if I did not fi­nally leave, with the help of my very sup­port­ive and won­der­ful par­ents, I might have lost my life.

Do­mes­tic abuse is se­ri­ous. It im­pacts peo­ple from all walks of life, all so­cioe­co­nomic strata, all ed­u­ca­tion lev­els.

While abuse ef­fects men and chil­dren, HER is fo­cus­ing on women trapped in these sit­u­a­tions. The sad truth is that women are the in­di­vid­u­als most of­ten im­pacted. When I started telling my story to friends, even strangers, I was shocked at how many women then con­fided in me that ei­ther they, them­selves, had been a vic­tim or knew some­one who was. Talk­ing about abuse is so vi­tally im­por­tant. This is­sue is filled with both in­spir­ing sto­ries and sto­ries that are meant to raise aware­ness. We have tried to in­clude use­ful in­for­ma­tion for any­one who needs help.

En­joy the beau­ti­ful au­tumn weather. We love to hear from you, so please let us know if you have any ideas or feed­back.

See you next month!

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