Submitted by SAFE San Juans.
February is National Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month. This is an issue that impacts teens, as well as their parents, guardians, siblings, teachers, friends, and communities. At SAFE San Juans, our hope is to help teens, and the community as a whole, by increasing awareness about teen dating violence through prevention education.
Statistics from national studies document the severity and how frequently abuse occurs in teen relationships. One study found that “one in three teens in the [United States] will experience physical, sexual, or emotional abuse from someone they’re in a relationship with before they become adults, and nearly half (43 percent) of college women report experiencing violent or abusive dating behaviors.” (Love is Respect, https://www.loveisrespect.org/get-involved/tdvam/) Another study found that “69.5 percent of women who have been physically or sexually abused or stalked by a dating partner first experienced abuse between the ages of 11-24.” (National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence, http://www.ncdsv.org/publications_dateteenviolence.html). These statistics are startling.
SAFE San Juans is proud to be a part of the solution with the hope of decreasing these high percentages through awareness and prevention education. We have the wonderful opportunity to partner with San Juan County School Districts teaching lessons about healthy relationships, consent, exploitation, and online safety. We also provide newsletters and outreach education to our community. We hope that by bringing awareness to our youth through the schools and events like this, our community can be part of the solution to decrease the rate of teen dating violence. If you are interested in learning more, please search the websites listed above and visit our website, safesj.org.
The national color chosen for Teen Dating Awareness Month is Orange. The nationally recognized day to wear orange is Feb. 9! Our staff will be wearing orange this day to help spread awareness. We hope others in the community will join us!