By: Kaytlin Thornton | Contributor
On Monday, Oct. 26, USA Violence Prevention hosted the Lavender Monologues for Domestic Violence Awareness Month over Zoom. The Lavender Monologues is a program that spreads awareness about domestic violence through survivors’ stories. The program also presented many resources, both confidential and not, for students to turn to if they ever found themselves in a domestic violence situation.
The virtual program began with several speakers. SGA President Tia Nickens presented the Welcome. Following her, attendees were able to hear from Ross Scott, the Outreach Coordinator at the Penelope House. The Penelope House provides protection, support and a safe place to stay for victims of domestic violence and their children. She spoke a bit about how and why domestic violence can happen and how it can be difficult to escape get away from it.
Attendees learned more about USA’s Title IX Program and the Advocate Program from FeAunte Preyear, a Title IX specialist and investigator. Title IX is a federal civil rights law that prohibits sex discrimination in educational institutions that receive federal funding.
The monologues themselves were stories from survivors of domestic violence. They were read aloud to the event’s attendees. There were nine monologues in total. Each one read in first-person by a volunteer of the event and presented very real and raw depictions of what it feels like to be a victim of domestic violence. Several monologues discussed how difficult it could be to both leaves and recover from a domestic violence situation.
When asked about the program’s importance and how the monologues help educate and prevent domestic violence, the master of ceremonies Ansley Romero from Title IX, said that the event helps educate because they have speakers who come in and help students learn the warning signs. She believes that education on this topic is so important because domestic violence can happen to anyone.
“Our speakers provide that education piece and our volunteers that read the stories give more of a personal piece.” Romero said, “Because it’s easy to say on paper that this is domestic violence and this is what happens, but until you actually hear of a situation or are in a situation it’s not such a straightforward thing. I think hearing these stories really puts it in perspective to students that this can happen to anybody.”