Experiential event aims to guide teenagers through healthy relationships

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An upcoming event, “In Their Shoes: Building Healthy Relationships,” will aim to provide young people with an understanding of healthy relationship dynamics.

Teenagers 14 and up as well as any interested adults are invited to participate in the experiential activity.

“This program teaches concepts necessary to speak to someone impacted by Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) about their experience and direct them to potentially life-saving resources,” according to a news release.

The Willow Domestic Violence Center and #BeMoreLikeClaire have collaborated to create Claire’s Community, “a free relationship violence prevention program that equips parents, mentors, coaches, and adults who work with youth with the skills, confidence, and tools they need to help prevent young people from becoming a victim or perpetrator of relationship violence,” according to a news release.

As part of the event, Claire’s Community facilitators will guide participants through a simulation called In Their Shoes. They will then have an open and honest group discussion about how to recognize both healthy and unhealthy behaviors in relationships.

Those in attendance will gain insight into noticing red flags, giving and receiving consent, where to find support, and learn shared vocabulary, according to the news release. This will also lead to knowing how to speak up when witnessing someone who may be experiencing IPV.

“Participants will gain perspective on what it means to be a youth experiencing intimate partner violence, learn about types of abuse that aren’t physical but can be equally as destructive, understand the importance of advocacy, and collect information on local resources,” according to the release.

“In Their Shoes: Building Healthy Relationships” is scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13 at the Lawrence Public Library, 707 Vermont St. The event is free to attend, but registration is required. Register in advance at this link.

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and the Willow will continue to host awareness and educational events throughout the month. Visit this link to learn what else the Willow has lined up.

Get help in Lawrence

Domestic violence situations: The Willow Domestic Violence Center
  • Reach the Willow for help 24/7 at 785-843-3333.
  • Find more resources on the Willow’s website at this link.
  • National hotline: Call 1-800-799-SAFE (7233), text “START” to 88788, and/or visit thehotline.org to chat and learn more, 24/7.
File for an order of protection

In Kansas, victim-survivors of stalking and abuse can file for court orders of protection from abuse or stalking online. Visit kspop.org and follow the instructions on the website. The service is available for any county in Kansas. You can also file for a protection order with traditional paper forms; check this link for more information.

Learn the warning signs

Read about warning signs of domestic violence and emotional abuse and learn how you can help at this link.

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Maya Hodison (she/her), equity reporter, can be reached at mhodison (at) lawrencekstimes (dot) com. Read more of her work for the Times here. Check out her staff bio here.

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