October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and the Golden State is turning PURPLE!

caturnspurple_indesignOctober, 2015 – Amador County, CA – It seems there are so many awareness campaigns, national recognition days, and foundations that one could choose a different cause to support every day. Operation Care is asking you join the Golden State in turning purple, and take a moment to think about domestic violence and the role it plays in our small community. Amador County is not immune to this global epidemic. This year alone, Operation Care, a local organization founded in 1980 to help victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, has helped 228 women and men who have been abused by their partners.

That’s why Operation Care is urging you to join the California Partnership to End Domestic Violence and over 1,000 advocates, organizations and allied groups throughout the Golden State of California in wearing purple, the national color of domestic violence awareness.

Domestic violence and abuse isn’t always physical. It can be verbal, sexual, emotional, psychological or financial. For example, using technology to track and control someone is abusive behavior. Hacking into email and other website accounts, requiring frequent check-ins using technology, and public shaming through internet sites are just some of the tactics used by abusive partners.

Domestic violence is often kept very silent. Family, friends and neighbors are often afraid to rock the boat by taking action. Operation Care’s goal is to bring this issue into the open and bring the community together in a collective commitment to end the violence.

“We are asking everyone to to take action,” said Tammie Crabtree, Executive Director of Operation Care, “not only by wearing purple, but by speaking out against violence.” Physical violence can escalate over time, and can even end in death. Children living in an abusive household will carry the scars from their childhood into adulthood. “The only way to stop the violence is to not tolerate it,” said Tammie. “Say something. Do something. If you witness a friend or loved one in an abusive situation, confront them. Tell them it is not OK to be verbally, physically, or emotionally abused, and that there is help available to them. If you find yourself in a violent relationship, don’t stay, get help.”

Operation Care has a 24-hour crisis line (209-223-2600) and all calls are strictly confidential. Peer counselors are always available to help with safe shelter, a safety plan, a temporary restraining order, or just to listen.  “It is important to note that we are non-judgmental,” added Tammie. “People often go back, and we will respect their choice. Our door is open for a victim to return as often as needed.”

October is nationally recognized as Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Purple Peace baskets have been placed at various locations throughout the community. Each basket is filled with free purple bracelets, ribbons, and stickers. Operation Care urges you to join the Golden State and wear your purple in support of Domestic Violence Awareness Month and increasing awareness of domestic violence. Because the last month kept Operation Care staff and volunteers busy with a move to their new location at 817 Court Street, Suite 12, Jackson, and setting up a Donation Center for the Butte Fire, they will not be holding their annual Purple Soldier Neon Fun Run or placing purple people around the county.

Operation Care has been providing services and safe shelter for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault for thirty-five years. During the 2014/15 fiscal year, advocates helped 228 domestic violence victims, and 42 women and children were provided safe shelter. Staff provided 279 peer counseling sessions with men, women and children and hundreds of transports to appointments, court, and other locations.

The mission of the organization is to provide domestic violence and sexual assault support services, crisis intervention and education in our community. For more information call 209-223-2897 or visit www.operationcare.org and www.facebook.com/operationcare

More about domestic violence:
California Partnership to End Domestic Violence: http://www.cpedv.org/
NoMore – Together we can end domestic violence: http://www.nomore.org
Mary Kay Foundation: http://www.marykayfoundation.org/pages/WomenAndViolence.aspx
Blue Shield Against Violence: http://www.blueshieldcafoundation.org/programs/program-area/blue-shield-against-violence
Avon Foundation Speak Out Against Violence: http://www.avonfoundation.org/causes/domestic-violence/