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Domestic Violence Awareness Month provides perfect opportunity for continued conversation and action around violence prevention

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Kent County agencies join together to provide Domestic Violence Awareness Month community events

Domestic Violence Hotlines

All of the hotlines listed below are available 24/7. 

Calling a hotline can be a scary step for someone. If you know someone experience violence, encourage them to give a hotline a call, but also offer to sit with them as they make this call. You can also remind them that making the call does not have to mean that they have made the decision to leave an abusive relationship; someone experiencing violence can call a hotline to find out more information and learn about ways an agency can support them.



A Journey in Their Shoes is free and open to the public and will take place at 6:30p.m. on Wednesday, October 29.

A Journey in Their Shoes is free and open to the public and will take place at 6:30p.m. on Wednesday, October 29.

GRAND RAPIDS -- Over the last few weeks, conversations around domestic violence have flooded the media. Without a doubt, the recent crimes within the National Football League has brought the issue of domestic abuse to the forefront.

While it is ever important to recognize and continue this ongoing conversation, it is also necessary to address domestic violence from a larger and more comprehensive framework.

One in 4 women, and 1 in 7 men in the United States have experienced severe physical violence by an intimate partner in their lifetime. In Kent County, this translates to approximately 80,000 women and 43,500 men.

Domestic violence knows no boundaries or barriers. Although it is a crime that is predominately committed against girls and women, domestic violence can happen to anyone regardless of their identities—including race, education, ability, sexual orientation, and class.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and it is the perfect opportunity to increase our community’s awareness of this issue—from how to support someone who is experiencing abuse to better understanding the barriers to leaving an abuse relationship. More importantly, Domestic Violence Awareness Month provides us all with opportunities to take action to end this crime.

Everyone deserves a life free of violence, but this basic human right cannot be achieved without the ongoing work of an entire community.

Safe Haven encourages everyone during the month of October to consider how they can work to end domestic violence in their own community. From attending one of the many Domestic Violence Awareness Month events going on throughout October to taking time to volunteer at or support a domestic violence agency, there are many ways our community can get involved and work towards our mission of ending domestic abuse:

  • Candlelight Vigil: 5:30PM, Wednesday, October 1 at 25 Sheldon Blvd., Grand Rapids (YWCA West Central Michigan)

    The candlelight vigil is held for victims of domestic violence who were murdered as a result of domestic violence.

  • Noontime Education Forum: 12PM, Thursday, October 23 on the 5th Floor of the Kent County Courthouse, which is located at 180 Ottawa Ave. NW, Grand Rapids

    The Kent County Domestic Violence Community Coordinated Response Team will have experts present on the intersection of mothers, domestic violence, and failure to protect laws. For more information, visit

  • A Journey in Their Shoes: 6:30PM, Wednesday, October 29 at 601 1st St NW, Grand Rapids.

    This event is designed to help participants begin to understand the issues, barriers to seeking help, and the emotions victims/survivors of domestic violence experience each day. During the simulation, participants play the role of a victim/survivor of domestic violence and experience the responses they often receive from family, friends, and community members. For more information, visit


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