Clarion University will host Domestic Violence and Abuse Awareness Day from 2 to 4 p.m. Oct. 17 in the multi-purpose room of Gemmell Student Complex.
The event includes a panel discussion with representatives from Clarion University Police, Clarion County SAFE, Venango County PPC Violence Free Network and Jefferson County Community Action’s Crossroads Project. A gallery of photos featuring Clarion students and employees representing various forms abuse will provide a powerful experience, according to Amy Salsgiver, director of social equity.
DVAA day was developed by student Alyssa Snyder. The topic of domestic violence has always been important to Snyder, who was in a domestic violence situation from the ages of 15 to 18. It was not until after the relationship ended that she realized she had been abused. Since the abuse had not been physical, it took Snyder years to accept that the abuse was still present.
The experience inspired her to create an event that focused on various kinds of abuse – including physical, emotional and financial – and how it can damage a person's life.
"I've found that many people thought that domestic violence only meant physical violence," she said.
Snyder hopes the event brings awareness to all forms of domestic violence and provides resources for anyone involved in those situations.
"There are so many people out there that are in domestic violence situations and either don't realize it or don't know where to go for help," she said.
DVAA day is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided.
Sponsors are the Presidential Commission on Sexual Harassment, the DVAA Day Planning Committee and the Office of Social Equity.