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Shedding Light to Domestic Violence Survivors in the Asian Community

Shedding Light to Domestic Violence Survivors in the Asian Community

by Advocate & Community Organizer for API Chaya

KING5.com

Posted on October 17, 2012 at 10:31 AM

Power Purple: October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month
 
We shed a bright light this month on the dark tragedy of victims and survivors of domestic violence, and promote the measures that will end its prevalence in our communities.
 
API Chaya is a local nonprofit organization dedicated to serving survivors in crisis and raising awareness of domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking (particularly in the Asian, South Asian and Pacific Islander communities).  Language barriers, lack of information, immigration concerns, and a multitude of other cultural factors prevent those in need from seeking help.  Few in fact are even aware of the existence of centers like ours whose sole goal is to assist compatriots with compassion and resourcefulness.
 
It is common among Asians to put group harmony above individual need, which makes of seeking help particularly difficult.  Abuse events leave victims feeling hopeless and without control, which only adds to the difficulty.  Normal apprehension in discussing personal issues becomes greatly intensified.  What a victim says to a friend or family member in confidence may lead to gossip, or worse, a life-threatening form of retribution from an abuser who has now lost face.  If there is a downside to closely-knit ethnic communities it is this: word spreads.  In the end, a victim's unwillingness to actively seek help is far more about self-preservation than an unwillingness to improve circumstances.  A bold move for change is even harder for recent immigrants who do not trust the availability and effectiveness of law enforcement and are intimidated by a justice system stereotypically indifferent to the values of foreigners.  
 
All these factors keep victims from moving toward a life without abuse.  Fortunately there are handful of not-for-profit organizations that specialize in these matters.  API Chaya is a non-government safety center staffed with culturally and linguistically diverse problem-solvers that ensure privacy and empowerment.  Victims do not have to face the journey alone.
 
We provide Free and Confidential services.
 
•    Direct advocacy and supportive counseling
•    Outreach to engage and organize the youth as well as members of ethnic, LGBTQ and faith-based communities
•    Training to service providers, law enforcement, and community leaders
 
Etc…
 
Violence affects everyone and our success depends on your support and commitment.  Building safer and healthier communities starts with ending the tolerance and promoting victim services.  We ask that you help us break the silence by adorning the purple ribbon (the symbol for domestic violence awareness), and invite you to partner with us in our work as an important investment in building safer and healthier communities.
 
To learn more, visit the API Chaya website:
 
http://www.chayaseattle.org/
 
https://www.facebook.com/APIWFSC
 
Helpline: 206.325.0325   
Office: 206.467.9976

 

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