DELTA PREP is an initiative to support 19 state domestic violence coalitions to build their capacity to conduct primary prevention. The effort is funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in collaboration with the CDC Foundation. As last week’s National Leadership Committee meeting in Atlanta, we discussed how to support the growth and development of intimate partner violence prevention efforts.
One of the key steps identified by the participants was the need to honor and recognize the existing domestic violence movement and current efforts to prevent violence in relationships. This work takes place in many sectors: state coalitions with DELTA funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, local domestic violence agencies, and grassroots community groups making changes in their community to eradicate domestic violence.
While the public health field brings helpful prevention language, concepts and experiences, the domestic violence movement brings core values and a vibrant history of action. In addition to providing services to those who are abused and holding accountable those who commit abuse, those people and organizations involved in domestic violence work are engaged in making fundamental changes to our society so domestic violence does not exist.
Just think of the changes over the last 30 years. Here are just a few: “domestic violence” is language known to most people; better laws are in place; resources are available; government provides funding for domestic violence services and prevention; and sermons on domestic violence are heard in churches, mosques and temples throughout the country. The incredible increase of awareness and engagement of many sectors to address domestic violence provides a valuable foundation for our prevention efforts.
There is much more work to do to prevent intimate partner violence and sexual abuse. As we expand efforts to build prevention, we also should celebrate the work that has and is being done. Thank you for your work!