Our Solutions to Violence programs provide empowerment-based services to strengthen and support survivors of intimate partner abuse, sexual assault, and human trafficking crimes. We also provide prevention and education services for groups, schools, and the community about child abuse prevention and teen assault awareness.
HEALTHY TEENS RELATIONSHIPS CAMPAIGN
of South Santa Clara County 2015
On March 28, 2015, Community Solutions in partnership with Kaiser Permanente in the Community and Santa Clara County’s Public Health Department will be hosting the first Love is Respect Conference at Christopher High School in Gilroy. The conference is geared toward preventing teen dating violence and is open to teens and adults in Morgan Hill, Gilroy, and San Martin.
Throughout the community, we have recruited strong leaders and have trained them to organize the Love is Respect Conference. Our youth leaders will work in partnership with adult community leaders to host the Love is Respect Conference. The conference will educate youth and adults in creating healthy relationships.
Sexual assault and domestic violence are significant problems in the Gilroy Area. In 2013, the Santa Clara County District Attorney filed the highest number of domestic violence cases in the county in our 95020 zip code. One in three adolescents in the U.S. is a victim of physical, sexual, emotional or verbal abuse from a dating partner, a figure that far exceeds rates of other types of youth violence. Therefore, we have made it our mission as the youth leaders to lower that rate of violence through educating the youth and adult population on how to utilize available resources, how to advocate for a healthy relationship, and how to overcome domestic violence to form a stronger community as a whole. If we can work together as a community, together we can help to eradicate domestic violence and help everyone toward having healthy relationships.
School-Based Prevention Services
In Touch With Teens: Healthy Relationships Prevention Curriculum
We are currently providing In Touch With Teens, an evidence-informed healthy relationships prevention curriculum, at Briton Middle School, Live Oak High School and Christopher High School to over 1000 students.
The In Touch With Teens healthy relationships prevention curriculum will be presented by Community Solutions. The program will one hour each week for the duration of 8-10 weeks. The program will have two staff facilitating conversations and interactive learning exercises around identifying unhealthy relationships, sexual harassment, and creating healthy relationships.
Community Solutions’ Solutions to Violence Division promotes awareness and understanding of intimate partner violence, sexual assault and child abuse. We have provided Child Abuse Prevention (CAP) and Teen Assault Awareness Program (TAAP) programming since 1983 in Santa Clara and San Benito Counties. For the past two years, Community Solutions has utilized the In Touch With Teens curriculum in local high schools. Evaluations of the programs have shown that students are able to apply the skills they learned in class to intervene with fellow classmates, increase in self-esteem, and develop a better understanding of healthy relationships.
As a result of the In Touch with Teens healthy relationships prevention curriculum teens will:
1. Help to define and identify healthy relationships;
2. Recognize the warning signs of an unhealthy relationship;
3. Learn problem-solving skills surrounding relationship (intimate or
4. Target roots of low self-esteem and develop measures toward
building stronger esteem; and
5. Recognize their responsibilities as bystanders and learn how to
advocate for violence-free relationships.
February: Teen Dating Violence
Teen dating violence affects youth in every community across the United States. In 2006, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that in a single year 1.5 million high school students nationwide experienced physical abuse from a dating partner. A different statistic states that nearly one in three teenagers have been purposely hit, slapped, or physically hurt by a boyfriend or girlfriend. However, teen dating violence does not only encompass physical abuse. It is a recurring pattern of controlling, abusive and aggressive behaviors in a romantic relationship. This includes physical abuse, but can also consist of put-downs, threats, stalking, and/or isolation from friends and family.
There are many things that can be done to help someone in an abusive relationship. First, be available to listen objectively and non-judgmentally if someone asks for help. It can be difficult and frightening for survivors of dating violence to share their experiences. Let the survivor know that you believe them, and that violence under any circumstance is unacceptable. Encourage them to contact a local domestic violence agency.
Every individual has the right to a safe and healthy intimate relationship regardless of who they are or who they choose to love. Teenagers need to understand their rights and have healthy expectations prior to entering dating relationships.
Parents can facilitate this conversation by sitting down with their teen one-on-one and asking questions like:
What do you think a dating relationship is like?
What are your friends’ dating relationships like?
Have you ever seen any kind of abusive behavior occur between two people who are going out? What do you think a healthy relationship looks like?
By listening respectfully and validating the teen’s point-of-view, a parent can empower their teen to think critically about and understand their right to be safe in a dating relationship.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Physical Dating Violence Among High School Students—United States, 2003,” Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, May 19, 2006, Vol. 55, No. 19.