By Breckan Erdman, Program Specialist for the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence
Social justice movements thrive when each person does their part in advancing the cause. For some, this might mean canvassing in your community before a local election or volunteering for a local crisis line. It could also be educating your loved ones about microaggressions, showing up regularly to rallies for racial justice, or sharing your story of resilience as a survivor.
“Doing your part” to end domestic violence looks different for each and every one of us, but the key is that we act. When we go beyond raising awareness to taking action by showing up, stepping in, and speaking out, real social change is possible. That’s why, for Domestic Violence Awareness Month(DVAM) this October, we’re challenging you to find the “one thing” you can do to promote social change, and then take ACTION!
“You have to act as if it were radically possible to change the world. And you have to do it all the time.” -Angela Davis
Here at the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence, we believe that Awareness + Action = Social Change. So for DVAM 2018, we are asking you to do #1Thing to advance social change. Your #1Thing could be to:
- Donate your time and/or money to support your local domestic violence program.
- Contact your representatives to let them know why federal programs such as VAWA, FVPSA, and VOCA are important for survivors.
- Use your privilege to speak up the next time you see or hear a microaggression.
- Hold your loved ones accountable when they tell a racist/sexist joke.
- Vote—federal, state, and local elections are all important!
- Offer support and stability to a child experiencing domestic violence. Simply being there can make a difference in that child’s life.
- Engage in regular self-care to promote your long-term sustainability in the movement.
- Tell someone they matter.
- Support women-and people of color- owned business in your community.
The possibilities are endless, and each of these individual actions has value as we work together to create the world we want to live in. Once you’ve committed to your #1Thing, be sure to share it loudly and proudly—your #1Thing might inspire your friends and family to join you in taking action to end domestic violence!
Beyond #1Thing: Engaging Your Community for Social Change
Want to extend your impact? Real social change comes from collective action that includes the voices of individuals, families, institutions, and systems, which is why it’s important to engage your community. For ideas on how to spread awareness and inspire action for social change in your community, check out the #1Thing Action Guide and materials from our #1Thing launch webinar, Inspiring Action Through a Unified Message: What’s Your #1Thing?.
“The greatness of a community is most accurately measured by the compassionate actions of its members.” -Coretta Scott King
Join us for DVAM!
For more ideas, join our webinar on October 10 to learn how to engage your community and leverage the #1Thing message to promote social change. Then, tweet along with us on October 24th for a chance to connect with other change-makers and share how you’ve used the #1Thing message in your community. You can check out a full list of our #DVAM2018 events and activities highlighting the value of #1Thing on our website or download our DVAM flyer.