Every year during the month of October: Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM), GACS participates in many awareness events and activities highlighted below:
Grundy County Take Back The Night
This past fall, we kicked off the month of October in Grundy County, where the agency operates a satellite office in Morris, IL. “Grundy County Take Back The Night” is a free event, organized by our Groundwork Program and held annually at the Grundy County Court House. This year’s kickoff took place on Oct. 4 and included keynote speaker, Jason Helland (Grundy County State’s Attorney) as well as survivor guest speaker, Vickie Sue Crumb, who shared her story of survival with all in attendance.
Will County Take Back the Night
On Sunday October 16, the 21st annual Will County Take Back the Night (TBTN) event was held at St. John Lutheran Church in Joliet. GACS Groundwork Program Manager, Amirrah Abou-Youssef was this year’s co-chairperson of the event that includes resource tables, a vigil honoring those lost to domestic violence in the county and a march in the surrounding area to raise awareness of gender-based violence. This year, Will County TBTN partnered with Reclaim 13, an organization dedicated to freeing children from sexual exploitation and helping them reclaim a life of freedom, healing and hope. The number 13 refers to the average age in which the 4.5 million victims worldwide first are inducted into sex trafficking. Reclaim 13’s Executive Director Cassandra Ma was the featured speaker for the event. She is a clinical psychologist and provided an insightful speech regarding the prevalence of human trafficking in our world.
For more information in the annual Will County Take Back The Night, visit: www.willtbtn.com
Witches Night Out 2017
Witches Night Out is a costume fundraiser for women who want to make a difference in another woman’s life. Proceeds go to Will County Agencies serving women & children.The agencies selected provide services and support that help women secure their independence, regain their dignity, and become self-sufficient (www.witchesnightout.com). The event is held annually at the Jacob Henry Mansion (Joliet) and has continued to grow in popularity, year after year, with tickets selling out in record time. GACS was a proud recipient of proceeds from the 2017 event.
For more information on Witches Night Out, visit: www.witchesnightout.com
Angels Against Abuse 5K
Finally, the month of October was closed out with the 9th Annual Angels Against Abuse 5K Walk & Run on Oct. 28. The Angels Against Abuse 5K is hosted by Guardian Angel’s Groundwork Domestic Violence Program and Suzy’s Caring Place – Transitional Living Program. While the weather was not ideal on this cold and rainy Saturday, supporters still showed up to run, walk, and support the cause. The keynote speech was given by longtime GACS supporter, Will County State’s Attorney James W. Glasgow and survivor speaker Kristy O’Malley shared her story of surviving 11 years in an abusive marriage, that which she described as “living a nightmare.” Attendees were able to sign banners in support of the program’s awareness efforts and learn more about the services offered by the agency.
GACS is eternally grateful to all of those who show their support to the agency, especially by attending or otherwise supporting our awareness events. For more information on the programs benefiting from DVAM event proceeds, visit our webpage: