Junior League and Family Violence Council Colaborate on Campaign

“What children hear, HURTS. For a lifetime” is the theme of a public relations campaign being undertaken by the Savannah- Chatham Family Violence Council, with generous support from The Junior League of Savannah, to educate parents about the devastating affects of domestic violence on kids.

“Too many parents— especially mothers—convince themselves that if children do not directly witness violence it doesn’t affect them,” said Kris Rice, director of the Coastal Children’s Advocacy Center and FVC member. “Tragically, that’s just not true. Whether or not they see the abuse, kids are traumatized by hearing violent arguments and seeing the aftermath of the abuse. They frequently blame themselves, and feel helpless and terrified—because there’s nothing more devastating for kids than knowing that their mom is being hurt.”

The Family Violence Council sought help for the outreach campaign from the Junior League, which enthusiastically agreed to support the project, according to League President Lynn Brennan. “Our focus this year is women’s and children’s advocacy,” Brennan noted, “so this project dovetailed perfectly with the emphasis our membership had selected.”

A committee of League volunteers, chaired by Margie Stringer, has provided expertise and support for the project, including planning the April 16th kickoff event.

The campaign will include public service announcements, print and bus ads, and billboards, and will take place the last two weeks of April, during Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month and Crime Victims Rights Week.

Brochures providing information on the effects of family violence on children and including tear-off safety plans for kids will be distributed to schools, community centers, houses of worship, and victim service agencies. Ads and brochures will direct those who need help or information to FVC’s new website www.familyviolencecouncil. org .

“We hope this website will become an important source of information and assistance for the Savannah community,” said League volunteer chair Stringer, “and that children and families living with violence will take advantage of the agencies of help that exist locally.”

The Junior League of Savannah is an organization of over 1,000 women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers.

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