Free Events Planned for Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Harper College will observe October's Domestic Violence Awareness Month with a host of free educational events, including presentations from women's support groups and local social service agencies and a display from The Clothesline Project - a worldwide effort that relies on shirts decorated by survivors and victims' loved ones to tell the story of abuse.

That display, open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday, October 13 in the Student Center on the main floor of Building A, is a spinoff of a project that began in Cape Cod, Mass. in 1990; inspired by the AIDS Quilt, the shirts celebrate survival and tell women's stories in an effort to connect with others.

Harper's "Stand Up Week: Let Your Voices Be Heard" comes amid increased domestic violence incidents.

Statistics show an upward trend in the number of calls to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, and Harper's own Women's Program, which offers education and support to displaced homemakers, single moms and others - the majority of whom are domestic violence victims - has seen its enrollment increase by 33 percent in the last three years.


Other events scheduled as part of Harper's "Stand Up Week" include:


An in-depth look at how domestic violence affects victims and families, featuring Courtney Schaefer, medical and legal associate and sexual assault specialist from Northwest Council Against Sexual Assault; 2 p.m. Tuesday, October 11, Room A238, Building A.


A personal assault story and overview of sexual violence statistics, featuring Debbie Wilieko, founder and president of Advocacy, Living and Mentoring After Assault; 4 p.m. Tuesday, October 11 in Room A238, Building A.


An explanation of the courts' handling of domestic violence and abuse cases, featuring April Fehrenbacher, court advocate for the nonprofit agency Between Friends, which seeks to end domestic violence; 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, October 12, Room D233, Building D.


A survivor's story and close-up look at services provided by WINGS, with Christy Humphrey, family advocate and certified domestic violence professional for Women In Need Growing Stronger; 5 p.m. Thursday, October 13 in Room D233, Building D.


All events are free and open to the public. All are held on the College's main campus, 1200 W. Algonquin Road in Palatine For more information, call Student Activities, 847.925.6242.