Raising awareness of the problems of bullying, teen dating and domestic violence is key to the mission of the Melrose Alliance Against Violence. We offer a range of programs and events designed to raise awareness within the community and the schools.
Every October, during Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we hold MAAV’s Annual Walk & Candlelight Vigil. This event honors the victims of domestic violence homicide from our state and raises community awareness about the prevalence of domestic violence. The event includes the presentation of our Annual Advocacy in Action Award, honoring an individual or group who has worked to prevent domestic or teen dating violence. MAAV’s Annual Walk also is our largest annual fundraiser, raising money necessary to continue MAAV’s programs and services.
MAAV’s trainers work with all 8th grade students at Melrose Veterans Memorial Middle School as part of our Healthy Relationships program. Healthy Relationships teaches students about the problems of teen dating abuse and domestic violence and includes information on identifying warning signs, breaking up safely and how to help a friend.
MAAV’s Student Action Board of peer leaders at Melrose High School is involved in many of the awareness activities with fellow students at MHS. Members of the SAB lead presentations with all 9th graders through their freshman seminar classes, leading sessions on warning signs of abuse and alcohol and consent.
Men4MAAV, MAAV’s initiative focused on cultivating men as leaders and allies in ending gender-based violence, Men4MAAV, holds awareness activities in the school and community. Each year in March, Men4MAAV holds a ceremony to mark White Ribbon Day, where men take a pledge to stand up and be counted as allies against violence towards women. The group also has organized webinars on healthy masculinity for caregivers and presents an annual male leadership award.
Other awareness activities include:
- Palm cards listing hotline numbers placed in stores, restaurants, public buildings, churches, medical offices and businesses throughout the community.
- Information booth at the Annual Victorian Fair.
- MAAV e-newsletter, “The Communicator” with more than 2500 subscribers.
- Daily tips and updates using social media.
- Web site providing information and confidential advice.
- Editorials in the local newspapers and programs on cable television.
- Presentations on relationship violence to church, civic and community groups.