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21/365

21/365

The Cambridge Campaign Against Domestic Violence this week launched 21 Days of Questions/365 Days of Action, an interactive campaign designed to create community change by asking questions to mobilize action.

The campaign, organized and supported by a variety of city, educational, and non-profit organizations, asks the question "What could happen if all of us in Cambridge started talking about violence and relationships? Let’s find out!"

“This is an opportunity to really engage people around the entire city to have a conversation about an issue that affects most of us,” said Cambridge City Councillor Marjorie Decker who developed the campaign in collaboration with various community and city partners and agencies. “1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men will experience domestic violence abuse in their relationships, and the goal of this campaign is to make people feel empowered to ask questions and have a conversation about this topic so that we can learn what changes need to be made to ensure that people are safe in their relationships and in their homes.”

City residents can visit the website at http://21dayscambridge.org/ to find out how get involved, including submitting questions via text, email or social media sites.

The site also provides resources to assist people experiencing domestic, dating, partner violence: http://21dayscambridge.org/resources/

In addition to submitting questions, the organizers suggest the following ways to get involved:
- Promote the campaign in your communities: at your workplace, with your friends and family…
- Collect questions: on Facebook, at school, at work, at home…
- Display campaign materials at your business, school, place of worship…(contact Sara Doherty sdoherty@cambridgema.gov for materials)
- Volunteer for events during the “21 Days of Questions” in October 2012

Once questions are gathered, they will be sorted into content categories and a picture of our community’s priorities will start to emerge. The key questions will be presented back to campaign participants in small and large gatherings, online and via media. YOU and other members of the community will weigh in on the key issues Cambridge must focus on. Together, community members and city leaders will examine existing resources to implement new strategies to address domestic violence. Together we will determine what more is needed and what roles we must all play to make our community a safer and healthier place for everyone. In November, you will be invited to a public event to hear back on the three themes that emerged from the campaign. In 2013, the 365 days of action will start.

Most recent questions submitted include:
- How do I support a friend who is in an unhealthy relationship and isn't ready to leave?
- Where can seniors go for help?
- How can we keep children safe in their homes?

My question is:
- How can we identify abusive relationship situations for ourselves and for those we care about?

What's your question and how will you get involved in the conversation to stimulate change?