Running Toward a Worthy Cause

There's a brand new charity in town.  It's called DVAAS, and it has big plans and even bigger goals.  DVAAS stands for Domestic Violence Abuse Awareness Society, and the founder of the MSU-B student organization, Jamie Schoonover, knows first-hand why we need more awareness of domestic violence in our community and more support for victims of the abuse.  Jamie has an amazing story to tell about her own personal journey from victim to advocate.  The incredible thing is that her story isn't that unusual.  She's just brave enough to tell it.  Over, and over, and over, hoping that her story can help others.  DVAAS has members and supporters across the community-- students, business owners, and everyday individuals (like me!)-- who hear Jamie's story, and many others like it, and want to do something to make a difference.

On Saturday, October 6th, DVAAS is hosting an event called Running Out of Silence on the MSU-B campus.  There will be a fun run, vendors, live music, and tons of other entertainment and activities.  The run will start at noon, with a day full of family-friendly activities to follow.  The cost for the run is $25 for the general public, with discounted rates for students and children.   You'll also receive an official Running Out of Silence t-shirt and bracelet for your fee.  DVAAS is hoping to raise over $100,000 in their first year, and this event will be the largest part of their fundraising.  That big plan includes hosting this event every year on the first Saturday in October.

This particular cause is one that matters to me, a lot.  I know people directly involved, past and present, in abusive relationships.  I worked in a local courtroom, and I saw firsthand the effect domestic violence has on the abuser, the victims, and the spectators, who are often innocent kids.   I know, after that experience, that we all know someone impacted by domestic violence.  It might be your friend, your neighbor, your relative, or it might be you.

DVAAS' goal is twofold; to raise awareness of domestic violence in our community, and to assist victims of domestic violence.  In the courtroom, I heard the stories of people (notice I don't say women, because domestic violence affects both genders) who said that they couldn't leave the abusive situation.  They had no way out, no money, no place to go, and no way to care for their children alone.  I hope that DVAAS can surpass their goal and help decrease both the abuse and the trap that victims feel caught in.

I hope to help DVAAS shoot past that 100k goal.  Please join me, by spreading the word, making donations, and easiest of all, attending the event on October 6th!

You can find out more information on this event, including how to register, or make a donation at the organization's website, www.dvaas.org.