Hope Shores Alliance marks Domestic Violence Awareness Month

ALPENA — Hope Shores Alliance is honoring Domestic Violence Awareness Month this year by amplifying survivor voices using art as the platform of expression.

Throughout October, Hope Shores Alliance will highlight submitted images and videos of art on social media as a way for survivors to share their stories about the impact of domestic violence. Submissions will be accepted until Oct. 28, can be shared anonymously or with recognition to the artist, and will be posted to the HSA Facebook page.

Different art forms include, but are not limited to, poetry, drawings, paintings, sculptures, dance, written works, or spoken pieces. Interested parties may send submissions of any art form to contactus@hopeshores.org and are encouraged to include why the art piece is important to them.

HSA has also partnered with Empowered Learners to facilitate a community workshop called Art of the Protest: Tillie Black Bear at Art in the Loft. The first session was last Monday and the next one is from 6 to 8 p.m. this coming Monday. Course content will focus on the grassroots movement to end gender-based violence and the dynamic role art has continued to play in propelling that movement forward.

To sign up for the Monday session, email Mitchel Dipzinski at mitcheldipzinski@gmail.com.

HSA and the Poetics Lab are hosting The Perseverance Monologues and Community Candlelight Vigil from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 28 at Art in the Loft, to finish the month with a celebration of resilience. The program will include a collage of pieces chosen by the performers that offer messages of perseverance, survivorship, strength and love to those harmed by domestic violence.

Spoken word poetry, monologues, music, and dance are encouraged as part of this celebration. Works can be original or adaptations. Artists do not need to be receiving services from Hope Shores Alliance or be the primary survivor of domestic violence in order to perform. Those interested in performing can email Mitchel Dipzinski at mitcheldipzinski@gmail.com to connect with event organizers for next steps.

A candlelight vigil will be held following the performance to celebrate survivors and honor victims of domestic violence.

“This is a time to come together to heal and recommit ourselves to eradicating gender-based violence and discrimination in our communities,” said HSA Outreach and Services Coordinator Rachel Berzack.

Members of the public are invited to attend and participate in all events. These events are open to the community at no cost.

According to the Michigan State Criminal Justice Information Center, 57,018 incidents of domestic violence were reported to Michigan police in 2019. Many more went unreported. Domestic violence is any pattern of behaviors intentionally and willfully carried out by a person in a relationship to maintain power and control over the other person. These behaviors can include emotional or verbal abuse, financial control, intimidation, threats, stalking, manipulation, isolation, as well as sexual or physical assaults. Survivors are never at fault for these behaviors. If someone discloses experiencing domestic violence, the most supportive response is to believe and validate their story.

Hope Shores Alliance works to end stalking, sexual assault, dating violence, and domestic violence. If you or anyone you know are in need of support, please contact the local 24-hour help and support line at 1-800-396-9129.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper? *

Starting at $4.62/week.

Subscribe Today