Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Today can be described as a triggering day for many people. We went to an organization called Kan-Win that focused on immigrant refugees who have faced domestic violence and/or sexual abuse. We learned about domestic violence and sexual abuse by participating in various activities that included listening to power points emphasizing the statistics of DV and sexual abuse as well how to listen to someone who is or was going through this kind of relationship, "In Her Shoes" and painting our interpretations of DV and sexual abuse.

The most impactful activity we did was "In Her Shoes." For this activity we were put into groups of two and given a card that shared life stories of DV and sexual abused victims. We then had to choose who would be the victim and who would the shadow, meaning the person who reads the card. Where each card took us we were given a scenario in our persons life and I had to decided what our next step would be. We ended up going back and fourth between court and the police but finally ended up with a happy ending. This activity showed us how hard it was to break out of this violent cycle and can take years to get the help these survivors need in order to escape their abuser. We also learned that in some cases victims can never break the violent cycle and it can cost them their life.

The other impactful activity was when we got into groups and painted our interpretations of DV and sexual abuse. Everyone in our catalyst group expressed that they really enjoyed the activity. We all agreed that it was a great exercise and we liked how it was therapeutic because after a triggering day like today, we needed something to help release all the emotions we were feeling. Everyone did a unique and great job expressing their thoughts and feelings in the paintings. Kan-win is showcasing our paintings in their next event which is really cool because it's like what we learned today and our understanding of DV and sexual abuse will be passed on to other people and maybe even inspire the must needed change.

Overall today was a tough day but eye opening. We were able to follow life stories of DV and sexual abuse victims and survivors and better understand how to help people who are in these situations. There is still work that needs to be done in order to help prevent domestic violence and sexual abuse victims and survivors, but with the help of organizations like Kan-win the change is possible.

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